Sound — 2
I've heard some people say that this album is a bit more experimental than Emmure's previous offering. To that I say, no offense to anyone who likes this band, but PUH-LEASE. The only "experimentation" I hear on this record are that the breakdowns (can they even be classified as songs?) are in different keys and tempos, Frankie Palmeri tries more than ever to sound like a horrible cross between Mitch Lucker (Suicide Silence, a superior deathcore band) and Fred Durst, and there's some "electronics" in there as well ("Lights Bring Salvation" being a notable example). The only things that closely resemble a song is "Area 64-66" and "A Voice from Below", in which there's about one riff in each followed by more breakdowns. For the most part though, this is the same cut-and-paste record Emmure have been making since they formed. There is no originality or innovation here, there is only chugging and breakdowns stretched out for almost forty minutes.
Lyrics — 1
Since there really isn't much to say about the music, I'll focus on the lyrics and vocals. Let me just get this out of the way, first and foremost... Frankie Palmeri is arguably one of the worst vocalist/lyricists today. Plain and simple. The guy seems out of touch with his world, which is perfectly understandable, but tries to make up for it with shallow lyrics about how much he hates his ex or how much he wants to fight people. For further proof of this, we turn now to "Drug Dealer Friend". ("I wanna watch you suck his d**k. I know you f**king love it b***h. Do you see me now? Look into my f**king eyes.") That's it. That's all the lyrics in a song, a song that is more than TWO MINUTES in length, mind you. Regarding his more "deeper" songs, "Last Words To Rose" contain him talking to "Rose" through his persona, "M. Bison". Okay, so obviously he loves Street Fighter, that's fine. But Judas H. Priest, at least be more vague or sane about it. ("I am Bison and you are Rose sent here to destroy me. I am forced to leave you. This is Shadaloo.") It's not much better on the lead single, "Demons with Ryu". I know the reference I am about to make is from Mortal Kombat, but for the love of God, someone please perform a fatality on this poser. To be fair though, there are a couple of good lyrics here and there, but good luck trying to figure out which ones he's reciting through his "gargling glass turned frat boy" vocals. Not much has changed for this guy since the last three breakdowns (sorry, I meant "albums"), other than he's more out of touch with the rest of the world, he likes Street Fighter and Transformers, and he's done even more to cement himself as one of the worst in the game. Scream, talk, repeat. NEXT!
Overall Impression — 1
Some of you reading this may think, "Boy, you're being pretty harsh about this record, aren't you? I bet you just hate them because it's the cool thing to do!" Yeah, let's totally excuse the fact that their music is unoriginal and uninspired, the vocals are ear-numbingly terrible, the lyrics are both confusing and meaningless, and the band carries a disgusting arrogance with their style. This is the new lowest common denominator for any kind of music, and is already my pick for worst album (of any genre) for 2011. Somewhere, Ryu is silently weeping... HADOUKEN!