The Metalcore genre, in fact ANY 'core' genre is the subject
of much controversy in the metal community and has divided opinion among a lot
of people. It's like the marmite of metal for a lot of people. But it IS metal.
So, for a lot of people it comes down to whether you love or hate 'core'.
Because if you like Metalcore you'll probably like this album. If you don't, you
should only listen if you can be open minded. That can be said for all music,
There is a considerable lack of the crossing over of growl vs clean vocals that
is common place among the characteristics of core, the vocal style being heavily
weighted towards the cleaner side of things. Still, does that make it bad? Not
in the least. What let's it down is the fact that Savages is very weak in terms
of lyrical originality. The album did fly by quite fast. It's not short, just
under 45 minutes, but I think that's more to do with the fact that it is
comprised of mostly very fast paced songs that have a lot of energy in most
places. But, again the lyrical lack of depth sees potential not entirely
fulfilled where it could have been - this is one area in which they have yet to
progress and remains their weakest point and lyrics are quite repetitive in
almost every song. It was neither helped nor hindered by the guest appearance of
Michael 'Vampire' Orlando on the opening track 'Break'. Also, there is the
inescapable observation that the pronunciation of words like 'see', 'me' and
'enemy' all for some reason end in 'ay'. Like "It's clear to say you're a sucker
for a freak like may" I mean WHAT? That's relatively minor in the grand scheme
of things, but it's something you can't help noticing and for me it distracted
me from the good points a little. The good things, well...
Those who appreciate a good bit of lead guitar shredding will not be
disappointed. It must be said that it is demonstrated well and it is nice and
refreshing when something that isn't characteristically a strong point of a
genre is taken on as well as they have done here with the guitars. They manage
to pull it off with some very enjoyable lead guitar work - just a shame that
they are so short and sharp and this gives way to the thought that one of the
bands stronger points has been marginally overlooked during writing and
production. The production is a strong plus, though. The label have spent some
money here and it does sound fairly polished, which I think for this genre is a
big plus. It does lean towards the commercial side, and the most receptive
audience will likely be younger metal fans, but that's usually par for the
course with this genre.
Whether intentional or not, the impression left is that they focused heavily on
pace and strength of clean vocals throughout this album - which helps show the
Bens drumming skills, whose contribution is the most powerful point, I think.
Only the penultimate track, a ballad called 'Tears Of The Sun', brings the pace
down. I'm glad there's only one of these because while it's good, the best thing
this album has going for it is the fast pace and hard hitting drum power, with
some impressive shredding.
It's good for what it is but it isn't anything new - the stronger points
outweigh the weaker ones to the point at which it is worth listening to, but the
vocals would not be out of place on a pop album written by American Idol