From Death to Destiny review by Asking Alexandria

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  • Released: Aug 6, 2013
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 7.1 (203 votes)
Asking Alexandria: From Death to Destiny
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Sound — 8
Asking Alexandria was formed by Ben Bruce when he moved back to the UK from Dubai in 2008, having just disbanded a previous band of the same name. The lineup suffered some initial shakiness, but was in its current form by the release of their first album, "Stand Up and Scream," in 2009. The band includes Danny Worsnop (vocals and keyboards), Ben Bruce (lead guitars, backing vocals, and programming), Cameron Liddell (rhythm guitars), James Cassells (drums), and Sam Bettley (bass guitars). On the current album, according to interviews with the band, Ben Bruce recorded all of the guitar parts and Cameron Liddell learned his parts afterwards for live performances. This was due in large part with Cameron's father becoming sick and he was taking care of this father in his spare time. The album was recorded in various studios, with parts of the album actually being recorded on their tour bus which was modified to be a mobile studio. There was some conflict with the band due to vocalist Danny Worsnop's drinking getting out of control, but ultimately this issue was resolved within the band. The album opens up with a track titled "Don't Pray for Me" which actually has the audio of the crowd arguing with an inebriated Danny Worsnop.

"From Death to Destiny" is Asking Alexandria's third full length studio release, and contains thirteen tracks with a total runtime of approximately 51 minutes. "Run Free" was the first single from the album, released in August 2012. It was followed up with the second single, "The Death of Me," which was released in March 2013. Their overall sound has changed pretty drastically, with more riffs versus heavy rhythms and breakdowns, and with some actual guitar solos included on the album. Ben Bruce has stated in interviews that he tried to write some songs that could be played on heavy rock radio as well as some truly "balls to the wall" tracks. The album opens up with the track "Don't Pray for Me," which has the audio of a live show where the crowd is chanting "drunk piece of sh-t" at vocalist, Danny Worsnop. From my internet research, this came from a show in Seattle where Danny was indeed too drunk to perform vocals. The track "Run Free" is a very interesting track as it has an orchestral break that slowly builds back to being heavy. The track "Break Down the Wall" has an interesting vibe to it, and the best little solo break on the album (in my opinion). The track "Creature" caught my attention, mainly because of the scream building up about two thirds of the way through the song. The track "White Line Fever," which of course is about cocaine addiction, is interesting in that the band utilized a Christian chorus group (Greater L.A. Cathedral Choir) on the track, though the choir did quit on them after realizing what they were singing about. The track "Until the End" is a heavy track with a neat little (slower tempo) tremolo picked riff, and a nice balance of "unclean" and cleaner vocals. The album closes out with the track "The Death of Me" which is a high energy track with an almost "sing along" chorus.

Lyrics — 7
Danny Worsnop has a very solid voice, despite vocal injuries a few years ago and his more recent bout with alcoholism. While there are definitely a fair share of "unclean" vocals, there is also a fair amount of relatively cleaner vocals on the album which makes for a nice breaking of monotony. Ben Bruce provides backup vocals on the album, and he does an excellent job as well. According to interviews with Ben Bruce, there were some problems getting Danny to actually record his lyrics for the album, because of both his alcoholism and the strain his alcoholism had created within the band, but in the end they got it worked out and the end product was worth the wait. For a change, the band has been writing lyrics about subjects besides drug abuse and partying. As a sample, here are some lyrics from the song "Run Free": "Open your heart, open your mind/ To a new world, to a new world/ Spread out your wings and learn to fly/ To a new world, to a new world/ Close your eyes and pray for something better than/ This world has to give! / Make it worth your time when you move on to/ Whatever the hell is next! / Know that you went in the end without a single/ Regret! / That you lived and loved and laughed and cried and/ Followed your dreams! / You won't be alone in the end/ You don't have to be afraid/ Run free and wild, let your heart soar with the eagles/ Run free and wild, let your love take over/ You won't be alone in the end/ You don't have to be afraid." Actually, those lyrics could still be about partying, but at least they are more covertly about partying.

Overall Impression — 8
The album really does have a more radio friendly type of vibe to it, but at the same time Asking Alexandria isn't trying to be a clone of anyone else. This is despite the fact that they have said in interviews that the album is like mixing Motley Crue and old Slipknot. My favorite tracks on the album are "Break Down the Wall" and "Creature." I don't know what to think about the track "Don't Pray for Me," as it seems like it would be rough as a vocalist to have a moment when you are publicly at your lowest being used as an audio sample on your new album you're expected to go out and tour behind and support. The bottom line, while I could get picky and point out some things I didn't like about this release, there were a lot of moments when I was pleasantly surprised. I was especially impressed with Ben Bruce's restraint when soloing, which is actually melodic with an emphasis on phrasing instead of just being some sweep picking, tremolo picking, and tapping.

72 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Skodward714
    I'm the type of metalhead who hates most metalcore, but I gave this a go for shits and giggles, and I have to say... it's actually not that bad. It's not something I'd listen to regularly, but it's pretty enjoyable for what it is.
    ToNtUz
    Easily beats justin bieber, lady gaga and other pop sh*t
    fromzero
    You said something but not much. "This rice is ok, better than horse poop."
    biff022
    Gaga (not a fan but let's try and keep it real) is far more listenable than this trash.
    crazysam23_Atax
    What about AA is Metalcore? Where's the Hardcore influence? That said, I agree with the rest of what you said.
    fatgleeson
    Its not metalcore, for some reason thats just the word used to describe pop metal bands like Bullet and such. Funny because most of them are neither metal or hardcore
    Macejko
    the second video suck, but in the first one that dude showed his great raspy vocals, he has potential, shame its wasted on shitty screams and chaosy music... his life, his music, going on
    jaybrink10101
    You know what I don't get? This up- and down-vote UG system. Unlike everyone else in the world, I judge comments and reviews based on whether or not they can justify their logic, not whether or not I agree with them. As an AA fan, AA fans piss me off because they're totally incapable of stomaching criticism of their bands. I don't get it. Oh well.
    grizzzzly_adams
    Whether anyone thinks this band sucks or is good, one thing is true-- they are horrible live. Whatever vocals you prefer from this guy, you won't hear live because he just shits out his mouth.
    jaybrink10101
    This was true. I'd argue that it's not true anymore, they're actually quite good, or at least seem to be in the videos coming in from the festivals. Danny plays it safe, but he's not in any way bad.
    EpiExplorer
    I'm incredibly surprised that this doesn't sound terrible. Its still incredibly simplistic but its not like that horrible thing they were doing before. That's as lenient I'm going to be, though. Review was pants btw. Edit: First single okay, second song is shite.
    Highelf04
    Isn't as bad as I thought it'd be Seems like they're finally starting to mature from the Drop D open string breakdowns that littered their first album
    BwareDWare94
    Not a huge fan of this band, but was pleasantly surprised by the clean vocals on the second video. Granted, as this band isn't American, their clean vocals wouldn't likely be the nasally nonsense of today's modern American metal, but still. I enjoyed his singing.
    ProgFripp74
    They're actually a lot bigger in America than in the UK despite being British. Can't say I'm a fan of their music but their attitude about getting drunk and not being to do shows to be "rock and roll" is just stupid.
    saltydonut88
    You're completely right about their success in America vs. GB but their whole getting drunk before show days are behind them. I'm pretty sure Danny doesn't even drink at all before shows but even if he does, they're all more mature about it then they were 2 years ago.
    jesusofpaign
    I can't think of another band other than Avenged Sevenfold (whom I love) that has notably nasally vocals.
    The jazz Man
    I like it.. More direct and punchy to the point songs.. It's a much more of a mature effort as well which I really like too. And Danny's vocals are pretty hard hitting which is beyond important for this band
    vppark2
    This album put me to sleep. Way too drone-like. Singing sounds like they took inspiration from many 80's hair metal bands like Def Leppard, while taking Five Finger Death Punch riffs and growls and put it all into one. Im terribly bored by this album.
    Cavalcade
    I learned ten times more from the songs at the end than the review itself. First one was meh, second one was pretty good, meaning I might put this on a couple Spotify playlists and see if it grows. Review, as Epi said, was pants. Listing blatantly obvious "fun facts" about the album, then adding a paragraph's worth (being generous) of opinion at the end, isn't a review.
    FlyingPirahna
    The Death of Me is actually decent as far as a rock song goes, but it definitely sounds like a modern update of glam metal. Dude has a strong voice, too. Still not something I'd want to listen to on my own, though.
    Skyvalve2012
    Never liked these guys...but I might as well give this album a shot. If it has actual riffs, why not?
    iammclovin
    I was okay with the first album, liked a few songs off the second but they really hit their stride with this album. I was pleasantly surprised.
    je1988
    Pretty good actually. Thought the other two were meh, but this one actually delivered. Well done AA.
    travislausch
    Never heard this band before, but I predicted every breakdown, manipulated vocal part, and even the electronic excursions in both tracks. Metalcore-by-numbers.
    crazysam23_Atax
    That's NOT what Metalcore is. You just described "Pop Metal". Metalcore actually has Hardcore influence. Ugh...
    Animal_Farm
    metalcore is parkway drive or august burns red...this... i dont want to know what this is...horror....horror
    OldeEnglish800
    I think they did a pretty good job with this album. I really like the songs: Don't Pray For Me, Run Free, and White Line Fever.
    jaybrink10101
    Also I have to point out that any vocalist whose voice drops an octave and develops that much grit, and yet gets better at singing, even if it is at the price of some his old growls and screams, gets mad respect from me.
    CollinsKChris
    I like this album a lot but I don't think it's their best album. I know AA has always been known for being simplistic but when you're listening to AA; you dont care. It's all about getting wild and having a good time. The album From Death To Destiny is a great listen but i strongly believe Reckless & Relentless was a lot better.
    the chalky one
    I got this album yesterday, the day it was released in the US. Meand my bro listened to it right after we got home. Best Asking Alexandria album ever!
    jaybrink10101
    I'm one of those guys who got into metal the disappointing way - ergo through the generic -core bands, then the less generic -core bands, then discovered Pantera and Soulfly and cut out all the -core crap. As such, I loved AA's first release, bought the second because I remembered liking the first, and then kinda gave up on them. Going back to listen to it, I have to admit I still like these guys. The first album was hopelessly generic and simply, but James Cassels is an exceptional drummer and Danny Worsnop has always been a talented vocalist. The second album was better but still generic and breakdowny. From what I've heard of this, it seems to be proper metal, and also much better. Danny's vocals are great, the riffs are better, less breakdowns, less synth...really awesome.
    vppark2
    this review is more like it.
    Mind_Reader7
    I reeeeeally hate that guy. Any time you search something, this fat neckbeard comes up. If he wore other sunnies, and perhaps put a cap on, he might not looks so douchey. I sound like an ass, but for some reason, just looking at this guy makes me mad.
    DeadIdentity81
    This guy is everything that's wrong with the rock/metal community.. Trashing bands and making fun of bands names blah blah blah.. Real mature... We should be supporting the bands not bashing them even if you don't like the music. You don't have to buy it to support it, support what they are trying to do...
    The_Dayman
    Supporting a band, even if you don't like their music? Yeah...No thanks.
    bigpancakeguy
    I think he meant you don't have to bash on a band just because you're not a fan of their music.
    DeadIdentity81
    Metal is metal.. It's a community.. Support the genre even if you don;t like the music. This whole bashing people for not liking a band you do etc etc, it's gets old...
    crazysam23_Atax
    No, why would I do that? If I like a band, I support them. I'm not supporting a band just because you think they're part of the "Metal community". Screw that.
    bradd101
    "This review is more like it" Yeah, God forbid a reviewer have a different opinion to you....
    vppark2
    Coverkiller's review actually had more to say about the album.....not this UG review.
    Morphogenesis26
    The problem I have with this guy is he's knowledgeable about bullshit. That, and there is absolutely no need for him to be wearing sunglasses indoors.
    DavesCrusade
    Everything I've heard about this album seemed pretty terrible, imo. Both songs that were posted i thought were actually kind of painful to hear. Stand Up and Scream, while generic, is actually sort of a guilty pleasure of mine. But with that album, it was at least good for a casual listen, or a pump-up at the gym. This album from all I have heard is pretty disappointing.
    angelwhatts
    In my opinion this band started from a very young age and their first 2 cds are imature and childish like most bands first cds. anyhow they were on top of their genere whatever buzzing in our ears. On this third album they have a more mature sound combining an 80s feel with new rocky grooves. You can actually really enjoy 3 or 4 songs from FDTD if you r an 80s music fan youll enjoy this album!
    Leigh1993
    I wonder if the reviewer realized that the Death of Me was also the third track, while the remix was the closer. Though this is a decent album, I do like R&R better. Danny's deeper voice bugs me during the "cleaner" parts of the album. There is not much differentiation between his clean and unclean vocals like there used to be.
    jaybrink10101
    You're right, his screams aren't as strong as they were, but if I'm honest, I totally prefer his new singing style.