Sound — 10
Well, this seems to be an album that people either love or loathe, so I thought I'd throw in my opinion. I found All Shall Perish through a friend who recommended them to me when they found out I like Job For A Cowboy. I had a listen on their website and I was suitably impressed. The song There's No Business To Be Done On A Dead Planet really caught me, so I picked up a copy of the album. After my first listen, I was impressed, but it was a throw away sort of thing, nothing to grab me. Then I played it again, and payed attention. Wow. The difference hit me. Starting with Eradication, the album just slams you in the face and doesn't let up. The fact is, whether people like it or not, these guys can f--king play. I mean that, they can really f--king play. Matt Kuykendall is easily one of the most inventive drummers I've ever heard, and I'm a technical death metal fan. He always seems to know when a beat is getting boring, and when it needs a fill or a run. His use of gravity blasts in There's No Business To Be Done On A Dead Planet is immensely effective despite the idea of a gravity blast being a common thing in the more chaotic styles of death metal (Eg: Nile, Cryptopsy, etc). The great thing I found on this album about Matt, was that even during breakdowns, he knew when it need some diversity, so consequently, when most bands would just have the double kicks follow the guitar's standard chug-chug, he throws in random fills and kicks to make them stand out a bit more. He is truly an underrated drummer. The guitar work on this album is catchy, to the point, riffage. There's a few solo's that show off their insane ability, but most of the riffs do that anyway (see Eradication). It shows how much a band can improve with a new guitarist, when they went from slam you into the wall deathcore, to this refined, almost technical death metal (Almost) sound in one album. The bass is pretty straight forward, but does get a few show off points (see There's No Business To Be Done On A Dead Planet) just to prove he's still there.
Lyrics — 9
The vocals on this album are the true highlight. Eddie Hermida has one of the most intense vocal ranges I've ever heard in metal, right up there with Matthew Chalk of Psycroptic and Devin Townsend of SYL fame. He switches from immensely low gutturals to ear-shattering screams in a split second and even throws in a few pig squeals for good measure. For a true example, listen to Wage Slaves, where Eddie climbs his entire range for the first breakdown. The lyrics are brilliant. Some of the most meaningful and well thought out lyrics in a genre noted for seemingly being filled with such gems as "She bled from every f--king hole". (sarcasm, I hate deathcore lyrics, which makes these brilliant lyrics stand out even more). Favourite line from the album is the ending to "There is no business... " which is "What good is all the money when there's nothing left to buy?". A poignent end to a brilliant song.
Overall Impression — 9
The production is damn near perfect, with everything clear and defined, while the guitar tone is perfect. The drum tone is extremely triggered, but not in a bad way, as it adds to the sound. There are a few bad points to this album just to be fair. Some of the riffs do tend to blur together. It's a bit short at only 30 minutes or so. And the breakdowns do get a bit repetitive. All in all however, this album is a shining beacon of deathcore and I'm hoping these guys can improve on it even more with their next album.