Sound — 6
Impending Doom are back with their second full length album on Facedown Records, produced by metalcore giant Tim Lambesis. Right of the bat you can tell just by looking at the album art that their sound has changed just a little bit. They've changed their logo from a death/grind-esque logo to a more deathcore type logo. This reflects their musical change. Their previous record was a bit faster with more riffs, and had more of a grind (I guess) influence. This record, however, is completely opposite (guitar-wise, that is). It's slower with more chugging. If I had to describe this band in the simplest way possible, I'd say that these guys are a combination of new Whitechapel and Acacia Strain with Christian lyrics. But there's only so much chugging that one can take. Sure, there are some pretty good riffs on this record, but it's only a handful and they're spread out so far apart. And in between is just chug after chug, or some Acacia Strain style riff. I honestly forgot what band I was listening to halfway through this CD. Actually, no, I take that back. Almost halfway through the CD there is a track called Welcome to Forever. It's probably my favorite song on the CD, and one that I'll actually be willing to come back to listen to. But there's a tiny little problem with it. Check that, a massive problem. The intro to that track sounds almost like a direct ripoff of the intro to Whitechapel's This is Exile. But still, it's a great song.
Lyrics — 7
The vocals are a bit flat. There aren't any pig squeals on this album (unless I missed them), unlike their previous, and the vocals here don't change much at all. The singer's voice sounds almost exactly like a hybrid of the vocalists for the two other bands I've mentioned. It's not as deep as Phil's from Whitechapel, yet not as shallow as Vincent's from Acacia Strain. The lyrics are probably where this band does their best. Being a Christian band, their lyrics often focus around Jesus, God, religion, salvation, and whatever. But the thing is, these aren't a bunch of Christians making metal, they're a bunch of Christians making worship metal. They aren't afraid to take their religion and pummel it into your brain through your ear canals.
Overall Impression — 7
Like I said, there are some great riffs in here, but they are too few and too far apart. However, while it isn't the most technical album out there, it's still something that's fun to bang your head to. I couldn't sit still and listen to this CD without getting bored, but I'd totally be down with moshing to it at a show. However, this CD is a bit repetitive, and by a bit, I mean as repetitive as Shadows Are Security (As I Lay Dying) and Continent (Acacia Strain) were. The whole Christian factor doesn't appeal to me, since I'm not a Christian myself. However, I do listen to many other bands that are Christian. They're just more interesting. If Impending Doom hadn't made this record sound like so many of their peers records, I'd have given it higher ratings. Welcome To Forever was definitely the standout track on this record, because it was the only one that I could tell apart from the rest of the songs. However, I must give these guys my respect for not being afraid to kick you in the nuts with their beliefs, especially in a scene where certain people can sometimes dismiss a band based on religion.