Becoming The Archetype
posted on 1/2009 By:
While I enjoyed The Physics of Fire, it seemed to lack just a little something from the debut, Terminate Damnation but with yet another slight line up shuffle, a Devin Townsend production (and guest appearance), Becoming the Archetype has cemented their position and Christian metal’s alpha act with an outstanding third album.
While still a metalcore act with a dash of experimental death metal, (the Unearth meets Opeth sound from the debut is slightly less accurate now), no matter how you try to classify BTA, one thing is for sure; they are damn good at what they do - melodic death metal with a metalcore undercurrent and some well used experimentation and piano/synths, of course all backed with biblical, religious themes.
Religious or not, metal heads should appreciate BTA's artistry and craft as they have grown from album to album with a confidence and ability that simply delivers more than both their clichéd deathcore/metalcore contemporaries and many of their whiny hardcore/metalcore Christian brethren. BTA’s music is well crafted, well played and thoughtful in its Christian throes without being over bearing.
However, truth be told, opener “Mountain of Souls” is actually one of the album's weakest tracks but when the title track rumbles in with an epic synth line in the chorus that’s one of the most rousing synth moments I’ve heard in a while, you simply have to appreciate what BTA have become over three albums. “Artificial Immortality” and “Self Existent” could have come from the once great The Showdown’s debut record with their aggressive blastbeats and rumbling grooves, but add a pinch of epic orchestration/choirs and some stop start tempos, and you get some idea of the end result. “Ransom” begins with sort of twisted Chamber music before lumbering and blasting with a short sharp burst of aggression and “Evil Unseen” delivers a purposeful lurch.
Of course, there are the requisite moments of introspective grace that’s expected for a Christian metal album, and they are done quite nicely as “St Anns Lullaby” and the start of the epic centerpiece “How Great Thou Art” (which features just a killer solo), give a few moments of acoustic respite. Things get a bit quirky to start “Deep Heaven,” but things get back on track and closer “End of the Age” is an epic endnote to the album. To their credit there's no real use of clean vocals and nothing that becomes too awfully sugary or preachy.
While most Christian metal seems content to reside in the predictable (Demon Hunter), simplistic (Soul Embraced), emo (A Hope for Home), copy As I Lay Dying (labelmates Inhale/Exhale, Destroy the Runner or simply force its way into heavier realms (Impending Doom, The Devil Wears Prada), the fact is bands like Becoming the Archetype, A Plea For Purging, Woe of Tyrants, Sleeping Giant and War of Ages are simply good metal bands who happen to be Christians and it's time they got their dues.
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RelatedBecoming The Archetype
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