Release DetailsLABEL Metal Blade Records
RELEASED ON 4/18/2006
When Excuses Become Antiques
posted on 4/2006 By:
What can you do? No matter how bad you hate pop metal it is never going away. And I am tired of saying I don’t like any of it. I am tired of finding bands to compare them to and trying to stay on top of the trends enough to sound topical when I slam them. And I am tired of them. Band after band, song after song like products from some assembly line of suck. The Anthrax opening, the Iron Maiden dual leads, the Killswitch Engage chorus, and the Fear Factory bridges. Just kill yourselves, all of you. Kill each other first. Last one standing gets to plug their own brain holes.
Phoenix Mourning are pretty good, though.
HAH!!! Fucking got yah.
I mean it. They are. I mean, numetal had its Sevendusts and Slipknots, so "MetalMeloCorePop" gets to have their Phoenix Mourning. Why? They actually have songs that don’t suck. Oh, please do not misunderstand me: they are HACKS totally ripping off better bands without any of the innovation. BUT, they put together their prefab kits and paint them in exciting colors.
It’s hard to place my finger on exactly why this record isn’t making me want to destroy a college dorm with every pretentious whiny student in it. But it’s got something to do with performances. The way this band puts this shit together, the way they write and record it is very little different from their peers, but when the amps have warmed and the singer has drunk his fill of honey lemon, they just fucking drive their heads through these songs, for the most part. Also the individual talents make a large difference. Instead of overly whine, girlish moaning for the main clean vocals, they have fallen upon a more honest vocal approach. The melodies are hack, but at least the way they are sung is not as affected. And the growls are, instead of hardcore bluster, black metal scratchy, which gives everything a slightly more sinister feel.
And when the band isn’t leaning too heavily on references they can fuck it up. The musicianship is top shelf, especially the drumming. And it’s recorded with the proper amount of care and crunch, so when the band is hitting their stride the result can stand up against some of the best in the biz.
Again, please understand this is a fairly typical modern pop metal record in conception. I had a hard time sitting through it to the end each time I listened. The style just gets old, no matter who is doing it and how well, after about five songs. Don't go into this expecting a pop metal revelation.
Bottom line is that if you are just utterly unable to stomach the thought of picking up a trendy album, don’t even bother with this. But if you have found yourself sometimes pondering how maybe some of these hacks might work their shit up to a decent, listenable level, check these idiots out. It’s not a year ender, it’s not changing the world, but it at least delivers the pop metal with verve and honesty. Maybe that’s enough. And to the band, if you care…drop the trendiness. Just drop anything that sounds like it might even accidentally get you on Headbangers Ball. You have real, honest to god potential to be a great act, but you have to cut the pop umbilical chord. Concentrate on the stuff that sets you apart. If you don’t care, thanks for not making me puke, at the very least.
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