Sound — 9
Well, Atreyu are one of those bands that have hanged a fair bit with their vocals and music. When I first listened to record, I thought of how Megadeth wanted to write a real, thrash album, similar to Rust In Peace. I truly think Atreyu have done just that, and gone back to their roots; perhaps another "Death-Grip On Yesterday" or "The Curse"? The vibe I get from this record is "We're F**ked! but we can still rock!" It's something I could see myself foolishly performing in the mirror, it's emotional, exciting, and sometimes painful (in a good way), and that's what music is meant to do; bring out feelings in people. Solos are tight, drum parts make your head bang, I even saw my Dad tapping his foot to "Ravenous"!
Lyrics — 8
Alex Varkatzas dominates his parts on vocals, and Brandon Saller always seems to clean things up beautifully, a wonderful balance. Kicking the record off with "Stop: Before It's To Late And We've Destroyed It All", confirms that Atreyu are still in good form. Dan Jacobs's lead melodies are simply gorgeous here, setting a really dark and evil mood for the rest of the record. The title track, "Congregation of the Damned" is quite simple really, telling a story about just doing what everybody else does, which leads to the human race's damnation, proving that the guys over in Atreyu know what their talking about. Before discussing "Storm to Pass", I'd like to explain that for me, singles in this genre of music are made to be mainstream, and it makes sense. Artists want to appeal to the general public, it good for record sales. Now, "Storm to Pass" is just that, it would appeal to everybody, but unlike "Ex's and Oh's" from their album "A Death-Grip On Yesterday", it fits into the album easily and doesn't seem out of place. The only thing I could possibly pick on is that sometimes that lyrics sometimes follow the lead guitar parts a bit too closely, not that it's a bad thing, but it feels 'cheesy' at times, especially on "You Were The King, And Know Your Unconscious"
Overall Impression — 9
To me, "Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses"'s vocals were too focused on the screaming. I didn't really like it, but slowly, Atreyu found a balance between the singing and screaming, and brought in a sense of teamwork with Brandon and Alex making the record a lot tighter. This album is definitely has aspects from all their previous works, and is a pleasure not to hear a record with songs that don't sound the same. I'll definitely be taking time to listen to this a lot over the next few months and appreciate it :) If all my CD's were stolen and I could only get 25 back, this would be one of the 25.