Sound — 10
This is a good hard slab of NWOAHM I believe the kids call it or metalcore. Basically its metal with rythmic hardcore breakdowns and a lot of technique in the guitars. The one thing that Killswitch seem to pull off better than other metalcore bands is the construction of there songs. The arrangements on this album are superb.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics are my only real gripe on this album. Jesse's lyrics were about hope and optimism why examining the corupption of self. Howard never seems to get that deep. On songs like Rose Of Shayrn (a song about his granmother and also a reference to the bible if I'm correct) and When Darkness Falls (how mankind changes during dark times) are brilliant but the others are either about love or breaking free. If I never heard jesse before this would rule as it is. It's just not the same.
Overall Impression — 10
This album definately spearheads the whole metal core genre, and its easily one of my favourite albums due to the amount of thought behind it however the progression from "Alive.. Or Just Breathing" may alienate sdme of there "core" fanbase. If it were stolen, I'd probrably just listen to the windows media audio of the album, anyway a worthwhile purchase.