» Cdreviews  
« back

As I Lay Dying - An Ocean Between Us

Published Sept. 10 2007

=Staff's pick

Nothing Left*
An Ocean Between Us*
Within Destruction*
Comfort Betrays*
I Never Wanted
Bury Us All*
The Sound Of Truth*
Wrath Upon Ourselves
This Is Who We Are*

Genre Metalcore
Tim Lambesis
Tracks 12
Phil Sgrosso
Runningtime 43 Min.
Nick Hipa
Label Metal Blade
Josh Gilbert
Release 27 Aug. 2007
Jordan Mancino
Country USA
Similar artists Soilwork, The Haunted

It is definitely not a matter of delivering something original. This is the American version of the melodic death metal wave, which started in Sweden, mixed with some metalcore and thrash. It could just as well have been Soilwork, Carnal Forge or Blinded Colony. Not to speak about all the ones coming from the other side of the Atlantic. But as always in these cases it doesn't necessarily is about being first, but doing it better than the others.

Nothing Left, leaves nothing left to wish for. Catchy riffs, heavy rhythm section and aggressive vocals. What I actually appreciate least about the genre is when the 'clean' vocals get too lame, shrill and monotonous. A bit of that can be heard in the title track, although it is still a catchy song. Within Destruction adds to the heavier, thrashier parts again, which is always nice as long as the melodies are there somewhere. The mix between 'clean vocal' songs and more aggressive ones continue with Forsaken and I Never Wanted representing the former and Comfort Betrays and Bury Us All the latter. I continuously prefer the latter, but without the variation it would have lost much ground anyway. Needless to say a hit like The Sound Of Truth makes this a more interesting album. The chorus is a bit similar to that of Dark Tranquillity's Dry Run, though.

According to the band they have tried to make a more spot-on and dynamic album. Well, to be spot-on it is still a bit over-produced. The dynamic is there, but you see though it after a while and the sense of news is not quite kept until the very end. There is a slightest, but yet, sense of boredom somewhere after nine tracks in basically the same 'every other' pattern, although the compositions in themselves are not weakening. Last I appreciate the positive vibe that the lyrics are giving. A lot of the band's originality actually lies in that, as opposed to many genre colleagues.

See also review of: The Powerless Rise , Shadows Are Security








8 chalices of 10 - David

Related links: