Sound — 8
I'll be honest. I've enjoyed very little of the new metalcore released this year. I've enjoyed even less deathcore released this year. I'll hear an album maybe once or twice, and then never touch it again. But I think Tennessee's deathcore act Dissect the Coroner's 2010 EP might be one of the exceptions, because I find myself listening to it more than the new albums from Whitechapel, Veil of Maya, or The Acacia Strain (among others). Did I just say Tennessee? You bet I did. The state famous for helping shape country and blues music is also bringing out some great metal. What keeps me coming back to this release for subsequent listens is the interesting, almost sinister sense of melody that DTC has developed. As many of you know, melody is something which many deathcore bands lack. But you can tell right from the introduction that DTC won't be one of those bands. The EP starts out with strange atmospheric effects layered over a lone church bell tolling, eventually adding a reversed piano melody before exploding into the first track Waiting For The Flood. A melodic, almost bouncy lead comes in over furious drums and tight, precise bass. I even think I can hear a keyboard in the background. From the first 30 seconds of the song, you can get a lot of information about this band. They like to play heavy. They like to play fast. The production is good. They know what scales and melodies are. They like to occasionally break it down. It seems that today in the metalcore/deathcore scene the word "melody" either means "drop C pedal riffing with leads in C Minor" or "poppy clean vocals during the chorus". That's not what I mean when I'm talking about Dissect the Coroner. What I mean is that if you took some parts of some of their songs, they would sound like tunes in a legitimate horror movie soundtrack. However, it seems like the guys keep a loose grip on some of the death/metalcore cliches, including some chugging riffs and breakdowns. You may like this, you may not. It's a matter of opinion. But don't let that turn you away, there are some great riffs on this EP.
Lyrics — 7
Singing and lyrics is where I have to dock a few points. I can't understand the vocalist at all. It's not that he's bad, he's just unintelligible. What some kids might describe as "brutal". This may work for some of you, but I like listening to the lyrics, so being able to understand some of them would be nice. Fortunately for anyone who wants the lyrics, they can be found on the band's MySpace page. Some of the lyrics are violent, some deal with life, but my favorite lyrics on this EP come from the track Waiting For The Flood. From my understanding, it's taking a stab at those Christians who live their lives in sin but still believe they will be admitted into heaven because simply because they believe. The lyrics speak for themselves, really: "Why is it that the ones who sin continue to believe they will be in this "heaven"?Well I'm casting shadows over your clear skies, and I'm laughing at your hypocritical beliefs. So let's party like it's 2012, standing between a vacant hell and a crowded heaven of cons like you and me..." The rest of the lyrics are alright. Some lines are pretty clever, too, like "With no hands on the clock I cannot get a grip on time, but the sun isn't up so it can't be our time to fade out". I just wish that understanding the lyrics was a little easier.
Overall Impression — 8
Yes, I know, you're dreading the prospect of having to listen to another band with a "verb-the-noun" name. I wasn't too sure what I'd be getting into, but best believe my expectations were exceeded. What we have here is a growing band who are already kicking up dust in the metal community. They've already toured throughout 40 of our 50 states, and have been met with positive reviews from various critics. One such critic, from MetalSucks.net, says that if DTC "can continue to shift away from the characteristics of today's generic deathcore, they have the potential to be huge." And I agree fully. They're already putting out some pretty good music, and if they can continue to progress they'll definitely be able to make it big. If you're a fan of either deathcore or metalcore, do yourself a favor and head over to Dissect the Coroner's MySpace page and give some of their tracks a listen. You might just like what you hear. These guys have definitely earned a spot on my radar, and I'll be keeping an eye on them.