Iím rather new to the (melodic) metalcore-genre, but have enjoyed getting to know bands like Haste The Day and All That Remains with their blend of hard and ďpitchingĒ riffs and very melodic passages, and the very varied vocals of their songs. Still Remains was said to have mixed influences from the Gothenborg melo-death style into the metalcore style on their first full length album, and that sounded interesting.
This, their second full length album, being my first encounter with this band, they seemed on the face of it to be another band on the lines of HTD and ATR, and I was looking forward to getting to know this album better, remembering that Haste The Dayís latest album Pressure The Hinges sort of grew on me by every listen. But it didnít quite stand the test of numerous listens as well as the before mentioned.
The technical sound of the recording is very good, itís obvious they had very experienced people to do the recording and the mixing; canít put a finger on that.
The intro and the first few tracks are promising, and is in style and production as I hoped for, pretty good melodic metalcore, without any strokes of genius though, but solid craftsmanship, and with good passages.
But after the first part of the album it seems that S.R. generally loose inspiration or stamina, and I guess ďrealĒ metalcore fans might say they make a commercial sell out, getting a lot softer and mainstream in both sound and composing, sounding more like a Nu- or Emo-metal band. If itís deliberate or not I canít say, but it seems that they are trying to broaden their appeal to please a larger audience (and thereby more buyers(?)), and in that compromises in the aggressiveness and the composing of the songs. On the last part of the album only Dropped From The Cherry Tree and Avalanche sounds like the two tracks Iíve heard on their MySpace page from the previous album, with the hard riffing and melodic choruses of genuine metalcore, and the melo-death sound still present.
True, new members in a band (in this case two, keyboard player and bassist) can pull the style of a band in another direction, but it this case it seems like quite a turnÖand in this case unfortunately not in a particular interesting direction in my opinion. One should think, that with the previous album being recorded two years ago, and the band doing extensive touring, thereby getting more experienced and better musicians, that they could come up with something generally more interesting.
I donít think this is a bad album, but the overall impression just isnít convincing enough, I was a bit disappointed.
Recommended tracks: The Wax Walls Of An Empty Room, Anemia In Your Sheets and Dropped From The Cherry Tree.