Messengers Review

artist: august burns red date: 02/16/2009 category: compact discs
august burns red: Messengers
Release Date: June 19, 2007
Label: Solid State Records
Genres: Metalcore
Number Of Tracks: 11
The Boys from ABR Are showing their amazing musical talents yet again with their 3rd album.
 Sound: 9.2
 Lyrics: 8.8
 Overall Impression: 9.4
 Overall rating:
 9.4 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.1 
 Users rating:
 9.6 
 Votes:
 141 
reviews (10) 73 comments vote for this album:
overall: 9.7
Messengers Reviewed by: Silverstein57, on june 19, 2007
9 of 9 people found this review helpful

Sound: Just when Everyone thought that "Metal-Core" music was heading out the door August Burns Red slapped us all in the face for thinking such a childish thing. Their New Album "Messengers" Is A Fast-Paced, Heavier Then Hell, Good Ol' Fashion Metal-Core album. The Boys from ABR Are showing their amazing musical talents yet again with their 3rd album. They Introduce a new singer on this album, but don't let that change your mind, as they are just as good, if not better than they have ever been. // 10

Lyrics: Although ABR Introduced a New singer on this album, it was still very well done as far as the lyrics go. At Times it sounds like All That Remains, but the lyrics fit so well with the music and the guitars, as does the singer. I am constantly amazed by their talent as a band, and their new singer I Think, has taken it to a new level. Definitely worth the wait and DEFINITELY their best album thus far in their career. // 9

Overall Impression: The quality of the Riffs, the Pounding of the Double-kicks, the sheer brilliance of the new vocalist, make this album unique in it's on sense, but in some areas like Mentioned above, I notice a resemblance to "The Fall Of Ideals" from All That Remains. Their complexity of the riffs, and the tone and everything, make it seem like it's nothing that's ever been heard before and make the whole album enjoyable, from the first track, to the 6 minute Epic ending of the CD. I would definitely buy this album, had I lost it, or had it stolen. // 10

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overall: 8.3
Messengers Reviewed by: Triple_Threat, on june 20, 2007
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: If you've never heard of ABR, and you like breakdowns, this is your new favorite band. With that said, I hope no one is scared off by the thought of just another metal core unit, with predictable boring breaks. Because there is nothing predictable about this band. The first thing one notices when popping in "Messengers" for the first time, is the drumming. From the ridiculous pacing to the progressive time signatures, the drums anchor the sound of this album. There are few drummers that can actually take the lead in a band, and this is one of those cases. During verses and breaks the drums begin to take on rhythmic structures of their own and you find yourself listening to the guitar riffs to keep your place in the song. This actually adds a very unique dynamic to the sound as a whole because you find yourself following the lead of the drums instead of a bass line or riff. There is constant guitar riffing going on throughout the songs, and most of these riffs are straightforward phrases that follow the "1..2..3..4.." structure of the song. At first I didn't think it a good idea to have such rhythmic riffs, but after a couple listens I found that it contrasted with the bass drum's rhythm so well, it sounded like two opposing times played over one another. August Burns Red got a new producer for this album after having already legendary metal producer Adam Dutkiewicz produce their first CD. The new producer definitely highlighted what this band does best, giving this album a devastating low end that will blow you away. // 9

Lyrics: ABR acquired a new frontman between this album and the last and the change is definitely a good one. The new singer has decent range and lots of intensity that gives this album an edge. My only complaint is that he doesn't showcase his range and dynamics enough. His verses often turn monotonous, a fault that many metal core bands have already fallen victim to. The lyrics are definitely powerful, dealing mostly with the downfalls of complacency and ignorance, but past that there isn't much interaction between the singer and the musicians. // 7

Overall Impression: For a second release, "Messengers" brings a lot to the table. While it refines and strengthens ABR's unique sound it helps to give a little bit of life back to the metalcore music scene. The tracks that stood out to me were "Composure", "Up Against the Ropes", and "The Blinding Light". Even though "Messengers" is heavy in breakdowns, this album is by no means one dimensional. Each track has a flavor of it's own that is as brutal as it is beautiful. Look for this release to take August Burns Red to the forefront of American metalcore. // 9

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overall: 9
Messengers Reviewed by: <the_last>, on july 13, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: Tight. One word can describe this entire album and that is it. ABR have come along way since their 2005 release, Thrill Seeker and it shows. The rhythms of the breakdowns are weirder than ever, their riffs are faster and their vocals are harder. To start with, their breakdowns have never been heavier as shown in songs like Back Burner, The Eleventh Hour and An American Dream. The complex rhythms that ABR is known for are back and even crazier. Even after many listens these rhythms will never stick in your head and it blows your mind how they can remember them while they play it live. ABR also throws in some pretty impressive and catchy riffs this time around such as in the intro of The Truth Of A Liar and Black Sheep. Their proficiency as musicians has grown in leaps and bounds and it is easily visible in almost all of their songs. They have a new vocalist this time around and he brings something new to the table, which is greater range. His voice can have a high pitched scream at some parts and sometimes can even go into what seems like death metal vocals, but it always fits that part of the song perfectly. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics on Messengers are somewhat different from Thrill Seeker, in that every member of the band contributed to the writing of the songs. Most songs lyrics are very epic and fit the song extremely well, especially in heavier parts and breakdowns the lyrics seem to make it almost heavier than it is, such as in The Eleventh Hour. The lyrics range in topics throughout the songs and can be interpreted by the listener as they please. The beliefs of the band are a bit more prominent in this album, especially in songs like Redemption and a few others. // 8

Overall Impression: Messengers is everything that Thrill Seeker was and much more. August Burns Red knew that they did not have to change their style of music as many bands do too frequently today, but simply improve on it. These young musicians have come a far way from their earlier releases and even Thrill Seeker. This album is the new face of metalcore and once again sets the bar in its genre for other bands as it's predecessor did 2 years ago. I love everything about this album and a few songs that stuck out in particular are Back Burner, Black Sheep, An American Dream and The Eleventh Hour. August Burns Red have served up another epic album and continue to impress fans and critics each time. // 9

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overall: 7.7
Messengers Reviewed by: dmc_74_usa, on july 14, 2007
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: This record completely blew me away for approximately the first week. The more I listened to it, the more I realised that while ABR is a band of incredibly talented musicians, they tend to lose track of how effective simplicity can be. This 11 track CD is full of the same breakdown. They tried so hard to break from the norm of modern day metalcore, that they in-turn have created the same sound for each song. Each song, individually, amazes me, but the record as a whole goes nowhere. It's like listening to one song 11 times in a row. I know all bands have their own sound, but these songs are just too similar and all share the same elements. // 6

Lyrics: Lyrically, this band is VERY sound. Jake's lyrics and vocal approach are very intense and compliment the music perfectly. It's not easy to find a vocal structure to the music of ABR but Jake does it amazingly. His vocals can become monotonous, but not nearly as bad as their old vocalist. Jake has far more range and better structuring ability. // 9

Overall Impression: This album, in my eyes, IS a step up from Thrill Seeker. The vocals are much better, and the music is catchier. It's main flaw is lack of originality among songs. As I said before, I love each and every song individually, but when I listen to the album, I feel as if it's the same idea for every song. It's like "ok, let's make this sound as technical as possible", which should not be the case. I still like this album, but I can't listen to it all the time. It's definately a good buy though, so if I lost this record I would end up buying it again. It's kinda infectious and as much as I can say to complain about it, I'm still gonna wanna listen to it from time to time. // 8

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overall: 10
Messengers Reviewed by: xheartcorex, on august 14, 2007
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: The sound has evolved greatly from their previous work, the first thing catching my ear being the new voice. Although Jake's voice is clearer and the way he growls the lyrics are easier to understand, I still prefer Josh's voice. In my opinion his vocals were harsher and flowed amazingly well with both guitars (not that Jake's vocal talent is bad, or anything). New sound, new voice I guess. The intro to "Truth Of A Liar" just blew me away, the energy around the sound being over the roof. Breakdowns were killer throughout the whole album, harmony was great as always in their repertoire. Melodies were somewhat catchier in "Thrill Seeker" in my opinion, but they lacked the intensity that the tracks of "Messengers" unleash on the listener. The lads have grown, it's unquestionable and thank God they haven't gone downhill after their throbbing first full release. // 10

Lyrics: Everyone in the band had a say in this album, hence the title "Messengers". Comparing to "Thrill Seeker", it's obviously written both musically and most of all lyrically from the perspective of all the members of the band. I've been fond of their lyrics, be it by Jon, Josh or Jake and the crew. IMHO, combining a musically strong band that's musically intense with lyrics 'for the heart and spirit' makes a band great. Hearing Jake scream his soul out into the mike in "Redemption" about humility, mercy and admittance of sin made my skin crawl, literally. It's really hard to explain the huge message the whole album hurls at you with immense force; you just have to listen to it for yourself and make your own conclusions. "Be my strength. Be my voice. Be my glory. Set me free." // 10

Overall Impression: When I first listened to the album, I barely remembered any melody, breakdowns, or just any catchy riff. Apart from the intro of "Truth Of A Liar", comparing to "Thrill Seeker", my first impression was "Eh, ok." However, I was greatly surprised when I listened to the album again, concentrating on it thoroughly. I was simply blown away. From the powerful, aggressive intro riff of "Truth Of A Liar" to the soft, but spectacular (in my opinion) finale of "Redemption", August Burns Red did not leave me a single though of regret for the price I payed for the album. I'd rate this 11+ if there was a possibility. My favorite has to be "Redemption". That song literally made my day, both lyrically and melodically. The Christian thematic around the lyrics wraps up an epic epilogue to and epic album. Dare I say this is a '07 masterpiece; moreover, one of the best metalcore releases of all time. I simply can't wait for their next release, which I'm sure will not be worse than their previous full realeases. // 10

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overall: 10
Messengers Reviewed by: gtribz, on october 15, 2007
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: August burns red is one of the best bands out there to this day. Their talent is unbelievable. Their sound in this CD is mind blowing. The band created some of the most complex riffs I have heard in a while. And it's about time because I was getting really tired of bands all sounding the same and using the same formulas to a song every time they play. The breakdowns in the CD are so intricate, to come up with these riffs and breakdowns takes a lot of time and passion to do, they obviously love what they are doing and they are definitely showing it in the way they play their songs and this type of music. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics in this CD arnt based just around the singer, the whole band contributed to the lyrics and made them what they wanted them to be. not just what the singer wants to talk about but what everyone wants to talk about in the songs. The singer in this CD somewhat sounds like the last singer in "Thrill Seeker" however the new singer can get lower with his screams and he knows when and when not to use the lows and highs. If it were the old singer I think this CD would of not been what it is. // 10

Overall Impression: "Messengers" and "Thrill Seeker" are like sequels to each other, if the band would of kept on playing on from "Thrill Seeker" this is what it would of been. The whole album is impressive, every single song. Each time you listen to it you pick up different sounds that you didn't hear the previous time you listened to it. As I stated before, the way they make their riffs and their songs really lets us know how much they put into every single song, they give every song everything they got. If I lost this CD I would buy it again. // 10

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overall: 9
Messengers Reviewed by: rebofthetemple, on january 21, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: Just when you though metalcore was dead, a band comes along that proves you wrong. August Burns Red is that band. These guys put Metal back into Metalcore (or Mathcore, if you want to get picky), and do it with a ferocity that will leave you breathless. Every song is a listen in itself, since every one features a huge amount of breakdowns that make it feel like your listening to several songs in one. This is a kind of a problem though, since if you listen to the album from start to finish, the tracks start to meld and sound the same. Listened seperatly, they are great, but together it's kind of a problem to listen to. The guitar riffs are one again very technical, and very catchy, and the drumming has improved once again, though the use of the crash symbol could have been toned down just a bit. The bass (when you hear it), holds the tracks together, which isn't much more than you could ask for. Tracks such as The Truth of a Liar, Back Burner and The Eleventh Hour showcase their wide arrange of skills very well, and several of these riffs you will have problems getting out of your head. // 9

Lyrics: One thing I really like about this band is their lyrics. There is no chorus's in their music, instead the lyrical section features a single free verse like poem that talks about the usual (as you can expect from Christian bands). Everything to do with redemtion, agony, longing, success and hate is covered, and you will have to read over the lyric book to really understand what they are talking about. An American Dream is the only track that does not stick with the pattern, and goes off about how America sees itself as the new world order. Their new vocalist has really improved the sound of this band, and unlike other screamo-style vocalists, you can actualy understand (most of the time) what he is yelling out. He is probably one of my favorites, along with Mark Hunter and Johnny Santos. Chanting is kept to a minimum in the album, with only The Truth Of A Liar and Redemption featuring this. // 9

Overall Impression: Overall, Messengers is much (MUCH) better than their second release Thrill Seeker, in my opinion. The guitar work, drumming and singing really seals the deal with this band for me, and I am really looking forward to their next release. Considering I am somewhat of a metal purist and hate most metalcore with a passion, that is a high praise. If this album was stolen I wouldn't hesitate to buy it again. Do youself a favour, go listen to this band if you havn't yet before you make your mind up on them. They will make you open your mind to other genres of music out there (well, they sure did with me). // 9

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overall: 8
Messengers Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 30, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: August Burns Red's newest CD, Messengers, is a great success. With new members Jake Luhrs (vocals), and Dustin Davidson (bass, vocals) adding in their singing/screaming/growling talents adding to the heavy riffs and tasty licks of the guitar team and the powerful drums and machine gun double kicks of Matt Greiner, ABR continues their strong sound, but keeps it fresh and new. // 8

Lyrics: The lyrics took much thought (beyond the colorless words of other death metal and metalcore bands). Though repetitive at times, it adds to the overall meaning of the deep message beyond the heavy instrumentation and praising Christ in every growl (look at the words to Redemption). Jake's new addition to the mix fit perfectly. It was along the lines of their previous vocalist, but more polished while before they were more raw sounding. All good and still intense (like campings "in tents" doo doo ch). // 7

Overall Impression: Though I find Thrill Seeker a better album, Messengers is still a majestic work of art. If Messengers had a few melodic releases within the songs like that of Thrill Seeker (listen to Too Late For Roses) I would be more psyked. I do find the guitars more skillful in Messengers by the musical improvement of JB and Brent. The song Vital Signs is my favorite due to the licks in the begining and The Eleventh Hour doesn't fall too far behind via intensity. Great Album. Buy It! I would. that is if I lost my previous copy. // 9

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overall: 9.7
Messengers Reviewed by: DanKraken, on october 15, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: Well upon hearing the first note of the first song on Messengers, I instantly fell in love with the technicallity of this album. Maybe not as technical as Thrill Seeker, but definately stronger musically. I love the way that they twist with timings to create the most intense breakdowns I've ever heard, along with the misplaced snare hits and the tightness of the kick from the drums to create an all out masterpiece. // 10

Lyrics: As I found out that ABR had changed frontmen, I was at first apprehensive as I had set a very high standard from the previous album, that I thought it could never be beaten. Until I listened to songs such as Back Burner and the Blinding Light, which completely took my breath away, ABR's new singer (who's name escapes from me at this moment in time) has completely blown away everything that Thrill Seeker had to offer in terms of singer capability, and lyrically, who can beat such lines as "When Did You Become So Cold? Slipping on the Ice again, When did you become so cold" in Back Burner just completely sends a proverbial shiver down my spine! // 9

Overall Impression: Messengers offers a massive change in pace from all the other metalcore bands at the moment, with the diversity in all of the music from drums to guitars to vocals, it offers a breath of fresh air for people who want truly heavy music, but with just enough melody to keep our hands punching the air with devil horns and our heads nodding back and forth until it feels like your neck can't take it anymore. I don't think I can compare ABR to any other band, but I know that if my copy of Messengers were lost/stolen, I would either kill myself, hunt down the man that did it, or buy another one within the next 24 hours. Peace, Love and all that jazz, DanKraken. // 10

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overall: 10
Messengers Reviewed by: unregistered, on february 16, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: August Burns Red returns with another phenominal album! J.B. and Brent came up with some wicked riffs and as always, Matt goes RAD on the drums. I prefer the new vocalist, Jake. his voice is somewhat easier to understand (I like to be able to get an idea of what there saying). // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics were great. Jake and Jordan did a great job with their screams/growls. Another nice thing is that the lyrics were clean and that ABR is Christians. We all arn't just "head smashing, brimstone preaching, hymn singers.":) I totally recomend this album. I am a crazy hardcore fan! G-MAN... // 10

Overall Impression: This album in my words was better that Thrill Seekers. Maybe because they are now more experienced. My most favorite songs are: Composure, The Truth of A Liar, Redemption, and Back Burner. The words to Back Burner sent chills down my spine and Redemption showed their Christian side. If this were stolen or lost, I would buy it again and hunt down the theif. // 10

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