Red I Flight
posted on 4/2008 By:
Another in what is becoming a very long list of bands combining melodic death metal with hardcore, Red I Flight unfortunately don’t do very much to distinguish themselves from the pack. What you’re essentially served up on The Years is European riffs, death growls, hardcore gang shouts and a smattering of lumbering breakdowns. Yep, we’ve heard it all before and really, with the likes of All Shall Perish doing this sort of thing with more brutality and sophistication, there’s little reason to be venturing this way. There’s also really no point in berating Red I Flight for lack of originality, so for those interested in this band and the whole deathcore genre, it’s far more worthwhile to get on with addressing the positives on The Years.
There is nothing that Red I Flight do particularly badly, in fact the band is pretty competent. The playing on The Years is tight, heavy and polished, with no real weak performances. Josh Robinson’s vocals are above par, especially his low growls, which strike a good balance between guttural and intelligible. The production also fares well, but you’d expect so from a Victory release so this is a given really. The Years sounds thick, fairly polished but with just enough dirt to bite the ears a bit. The main problem with this album then is the songs, in that none of them are bad but none really stick out either, even after several listens. I’d cite "Vigo the Carpathian" and "By the Beard of Zeus" as two of the better examples of the strict formula Red I Flight stay within. Ultimately, these guys play their chosen style reasonably well, but there are just too many other bands that play it better.
I think the reason I’ve come down on The Years a little harshly is because Red I Flight give reason to believe they are capable of more, so while this is frustrating at the moment, it has me hopeful that these guys will churn out something stronger in the near future. Even if it does turn out to be another short-lived trend, the deathcore style makes a lot more sense than anything that attempts to appropriate extreme metal for the purpose of juxtaposing it against boy band vocals. Hardcore and death metal can definitely work in combination, and there are enough good bands out there to justify this style. Red I Flight have the potential to join this group, but aren’t quite doing enough to stand out just yet with this album.
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