Life Cycles review by The Word Alive

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  • Released: Jul 3, 2012
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.3 (60 votes)
The Word Alive: Life Cycles
0

Sound — 9
The Word Alive. When I had first heard of their name, I thought to myself, "What kind of music could a band name like this play?" Immediately my first thoughts were indie, just because the indie genre has a load of band names that seem to bore me, but little did I know, this band is a metalcore act! With their sophomore release for their studio album, this album hits the spot on all ends in my mind. Now I know I may be considered a fanboy for these guys, but regardless, that still doesn't make these guys not impressive. The screams, and most importantly the singing are a lot better than on their debut album. The debut album was also incredible for me, but the singing didn't seem to have quite enough emotion for me.

Lyrics — 8
The meaning in most of the songs were pretty affectionate. The title track, "Life Cycles" I think had most of the meaning on the album. The intro starts off like this, "I'd rather die for what I believe, Than live a without meaning." Telle is able to speak these word with true emotion, as well as his screams later into the song. This song is surely a crowd pleaser, and overall an incredible performance when I saw them live opening up for Killswitch Engage last June. Overall the lyrics were good on this album, but not incredible.

Overall Impression — 8
Honestly, TWA is in their own league in the metalcore genre. They're their own band. I don't see many other bands similar to them. My utmost would definitely have to be the title track I had already mentioned called, "Life Cycles." I also love "Ambitionary" and "Evolution." The thing about this album, though, is that not one song ceases to impress. Every song has a mature sound, so that's what makes this album special. I would have liked to have seen some more softer songs, like "Astral Plane." But even softer at the same time. Maybe having an all acoustic song would be nice. But great effort from these guys once again, and I'm sure Luke Holland will be used to great advantage on their next release. TEAMTWA!

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47 comments sorted by best / new / date

    LightxGrenade
    It isn't a bad album, but it wasn't as interesting as Deceiver. The songs all sound too similar. Too much of that palm-muted chug-chug crap in every song.
    vppark2
    Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else.
    There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap.
    vppark2
    Noreee wrote: I liked the album. I loved a lot of the leads and solos. Also, if you're not into this kind of music, why are you even looking at this? Half of the people here calling the album "garbage" don't even like this genre of music. If you're into this kind of stuff and don't like the album it's understandable but if you're going to have a biased opinion, there's no point in sharing it.
    My thoughts exactly.
    BwareDWare94
    A prescription bottle full of spent shell casings. Who are they trying to convince that they're badasses? Themselves?
    vppark2
    millarso wrote: vppark2 wrote: millarso wrote: There is not a single thing that is unique about these guys. Metalcore is not dead, but the worst of it is being promoted the most. It's been "pop"ified. Also, to the reviewer, you should work on actually discussing the musical content moreso than why you think the band is good. After reading the review, I still don't know the slightest detail about the album itself. I mean yeah there was a few good guitar riffs at some points on this album, but nothing too worthy of mentioning. There weren't guitar riffs even worth mentioning and you gave it 9?! That doesn't make any freaking sense. And me a hipster? Hardly. I'm more like the metalcore equivalent of "I hate Bieber guy". I listen to Every Time I Die, The Chariot, Converge, and Stray From The Path who are all fairly popular for making quality metalcore that goes outside the lines. It is worth noting that all of the above bands have put out great material since 1999. Saying there hasn't been anything good since then is plain ignorant.
    Youve got to understand that in my mind its not simply right on a 9! Maybe like an 8.5 in my mind, but dont sh*t on me for contributing a review on here and at the same time say that there is nothing unique about these guys. I have heard some pretty good stuff from them, maybe not THAT unique, but just look at other bands out there that may also fall in this category. Also i just like the way that they do their music and like Sam Rulez Dude said, "For people who do like this style of music, I'd definitely recommend these guys over most of the other bands in this style. From what I listened to, they sound slightly more interesting and the lyrics I heard weren't half as bad as some of the other brain-dead shit going on right now." If u dont like their music, then simply, just got off this page...easy as that.
    Amaseng
    EpiExplorer wrote: Amaseng wrote: Abacus11 wrote: vppark2 wrote: Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else. There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap. I just can't think of a good metalcore record that's been released since about 1999. Besides that the genre is doing great. I just haven't heard a good metalcore record since Call me crazy, but somehow I think there's been at least ONE good metalcore record released since 1999. August Burns Red's Constellations and Underoath's Define the Great Line are a couple of examples. Get off your high horse. Those two are far too obvious, and not especially good. Two good albums would be Death of a Dead Day and Summon in Thunder. Hell, even add in Wonder by Knut. Does no one ever explore the underground for good music these days?
    "Underground" =/= good "Mainstream/Obvious" =/= bad
    bonjidonk
    I really enjoyed their first album, Deceiver, but this one just hasn't stood out as much to me. Still not a bad album, 7/10.
    Amaseng
    Abacus11 wrote: vppark2 wrote: Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else. There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap. I just can't think of a good metalcore record that's been released since about 1999. Besides that the genre is doing great. I just haven't heard a good metalcore record since
    Call me crazy, but somehow I think there's been at least ONE good metalcore record released since 1999. August Burns Red's Constellations and Underoath's Define the Great Line are a couple of examples. Get off your high horse.
    Noreee
    I liked the album. I loved a lot of the leads and solos. Also, if you're not into this kind of music, why are you even looking at this? Half of the people here calling the album "garbage" don't even like this genre of music. If you're into this kind of stuff and don't like the album it's understandable but if you're going to have a biased opinion, there's no point in sharing it.
    EpiExplorer
    So its cheesy metalcore with hip hop synths during the breakdowns... Yeah, fine, whatever.
    Noreee
    Hip Hop synths? Want to tell me who YOU'RE listening to these days ?
    Zan595
    ^I love you for liking SikTh, but I wouldn't really call Death of a Dead Day a metalcore album.
    stealstrings
    As I Lay Dying, August Burns Red, and All That Remains are the best in my opinion. Especially August Burns Red. They have some fast, crazy riffs. As I Lay Dying is my favourite though.
    Sam Rulez D00d
    Dammit. I should have bet money that EpiExplorer would have the first comment. As it usually goes, trashes the band and always seems to mention Converge haha About the album..... only heard 3 songs. Entirety was the most generic boring thing I've ever heard. Life Cycles and Dragon Spell were fun listens, but this really isn't what I'm into. For people who do like this style of music, I'd definitely recommend these guys over most of the other bands in this style. From what I listened to, they sound slightly more interesting and the lyrics I heard weren't half as bad as some of the other brain-dead shit going on right now.
    millarso
    There is not a single thing that is unique about these guys. Metalcore is not dead, but the worst of it is being promoted the most. It's been "pop"ified. Also, to the reviewer, you should work on actually discussing the musical content moreso than why you think the band is good. After reading the review, I still don't know the slightest detail about the album itself.
    EpiExplorer
    Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else.
    Japanese funk is getting in style. Seriously.
    CollinsKChris
    This is an amazing band that it INCREDIBLE live!! Deff one of my favorite bands to see!! I love this album a lot and I give it an 8!
    Noreee
    DaHaba08 wrote: I enjoyed the album a bit. I think they couldve done better tho i thought theyd get heavier but didnt really. They are heavier live than on album though telle unleashes some intense screams. The drummer loss i think hurt them though his fills were better and hes just a more aggressive drummer. Not bad id give the album a 7.
    The new drummer (Luke Holland) didn't write any of the parts on Life Cycles, they had someone outside the band do it. Luke has a youtube channel, check him out, he's an AMAZING drummer.
    vppark2
    Vergil3 wrote: Hey this is good..especially the song Life Cycles The World Alive..love the drums and vocals..plz guys stop demoting bands. And if u dont like metalcore **** off.. Dont comment here.
    Word*
    millarso
    @vppark2 Well, I wasn't trying to insult you at all. I was just trying to give you a tip because I absolutely love reviewing. And I should add that almost all of my reviews are metalcore albums. I know the genre in all of its varieties quite well. If you are going to write a review it NEEDS to talk about the music or it shouldn't exist at all. If the guitars are "meh" for a metalcore album, it doesn't deserve an 8.5. I personally gave it a 4 if that's any inclination. I'm not going to leave just because I don't like these guys because that isn't what this site is about. If I was to write a review about this I would say that the guitars are average, the screams are boring and homogeneous, the cleans are nasally and overambitious, and song structure fits the formula of their contemporaries to a tee. I don't think they are the worst thing in the world, but they definitely aren't breaking any ground.
    DaHaba08
    I enjoyed the album a bit. I think they couldve done better tho i thought theyd get heavier but didnt really. They are heavier live than on album though telle unleashes some intense screams. The drummer loss i think hurt them though his fills were better and hes just a more aggressive drummer. Not bad id give the album a 7.
    Geldin
    I'm with Epi here. The whole thing was corny, canned and rehashed numetalcore without the barest hint of maturity to it. This album could maybe pull a 5/10 rating tops.
    Abacus11
    What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else.
    vppark2
    BwareDWare94 wrote: vppark2 wrote: There could be worse guys. Look at Abandon All Ships... They're the same band. All of these try hard metalcore bands are the same. While people hate As I Lay Dying and Killswitch Engage (I love the former but hope the latter rediscovers their fire with Jesse Leach), at least each has their own sound. We thought metalcore was bad in the early 2000s, it's not even close to as bad as it is today. At least back then songs like Rose of Sharyn and Elegy were being released.
    They are not. Have you heard AAS's unclean vocalist, and on top with girly sounded cleans? Not trying to sh*t on them, but it's even more lackluster, and the fact that their songwriting is horrid. Attack Attack! and Emmure can also go there, as well. Ill agree about KsE and AILD tho, and lets also not forget All That Remains.
    millarso
    vppark2 wrote: millarso wrote: There is not a single thing that is unique about these guys. Metalcore is not dead, but the worst of it is being promoted the most. It's been "pop"ified. Also, to the reviewer, you should work on actually discussing the musical content moreso than why you think the band is good. After reading the review, I still don't know the slightest detail about the album itself. I mean yeah there was a few good guitar riffs at some points on this album, but nothing too worthy of mentioning.
    There weren't guitar riffs even worth mentioning and you gave it 9?! That doesn't make any freaking sense. And me a hipster? Hardly. I'm more like the metalcore equivalent of "I hate Bieber guy". I listen to Every Time I Die, The Chariot, Converge, and Stray From The Path who are all fairly popular for making quality metalcore that goes outside the lines. It is worth noting that all of the above bands have put out great material since 1999. Saying there hasn't been anything good since then is plain ignorant.
    EpiExplorer
    Amaseng wrote: Abacus11 wrote: vppark2 wrote: Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else. There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap. I just can't think of a good metalcore record that's been released since about 1999. Besides that the genre is doing great. I just haven't heard a good metalcore record since Call me crazy, but somehow I think there's been at least ONE good metalcore record released since 1999. August Burns Red's Constellations and Underoath's Define the Great Line are a couple of examples. Get off your high horse.
    Those two are far too obvious, and not especially good. Two good albums would be Death of a Dead Day and Summon in Thunder. Hell, even add in Wonder by Knut. Does no one ever explore the underground for good music these days?
    BwareDWare94
    vppark2 wrote: There could be worse guys. Look at Abandon All Ships...
    They're the same band. All of these try hard metalcore bands are the same. While people hate As I Lay Dying and Killswitch Engage (I love the former but hope the latter rediscovers their fire with Jesse Leach), at least each has their own sound. We thought metalcore was bad in the early 2000s, it's not even close to as bad as it is today. At least back then songs like Rose of Sharyn and Elegy were being released.
    EpiExplorer
    Personally, the best thing to do is listen to Skitsystem or Converge for metal/hardcore crossovers.
    Vergil3
    Hey this is good..especially the song Life Cycles The World Alive..love the drums and vocals..plz guys stop demoting bands. And if u dont like metalcore **** off.. Dont comment here.
    vppark2
    millarso wrote: There is not a single thing that is unique about these guys. Metalcore is not dead, but the worst of it is being promoted the most. It's been "pop"ified. Also, to the reviewer, you should work on actually discussing the musical content moreso than why you think the band is good. After reading the review, I still don't know the slightest detail about the album itself.
    I mean yeah there was a few good guitar riffs at some points on this album, but nothing too worthy of mentioning.
    EyesWideOpen
    Vergil3 wrote: Hey this is good..especially the song Life Cycles The World Alive..love the drums and vocals..plz guys stop demoting bands. And if u dont like metalcore **** off.. Dont comment here.
    Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I didn't realise people were only allowed to speak about something if they liked it. Grow up and accept that not everyone likes your favourite bands.
    guitarofosiris
    I also didn't realize that people were allowed to talk trash about a genre they don't know about or don't listen enough of it to judge.
    vppark2
    millarso wrote: @vppark2 Well, I wasn't trying to insult you at all. I was just trying to give you a tip because I absolutely love reviewing. And I should add that almost all of my reviews are metalcore albums. I know the genre in all of its varieties quite well. If you are going to write a review it NEEDS to talk about the music or it shouldn't exist at all. If the guitars are "meh" for a metalcore album, it doesn't deserve an 8.5. I personally gave it a 4 if that's any inclination. I'm not going to leave just because I don't like these guys because that isn't what this site is about. If I was to write a review about this I would say that the guitars are average, the screams are boring and homogeneous, the cleans are nasally and overambitious, and song structure fits the formula of their contemporaries to a tee. I don't think they are the worst thing in the world, but they definitely aren't breaking any ground.
    Good points. Thanks for that, but i think the singing is just fine. Not outstanding, but a lot better than their first album. They seemed to have stood out more here, and im not expert on singing since im not a singer, but in all honestly that seems to have been the highlight on this album. I dont hear anything nasally lol, maybe overambitious, idk, but who am i to judge about small things like that? I just think its a bit more than "meh" personally. Screams almost nvr bother me in the metalcore genre somehow, so idk how one judges this, but iguess isee what you're saying. Maybe you have more experience or knowledge on this genre or music itself to have good ears and to think well of it. Im just a silly ol 19 year old kid going to college, and decided to write this review, since it looked like no one else would. I have done 2 other reviews before, a bit better than this, since i had had more to talk about. Overall, it comes down to opinion, and i think that these guys def r in the top of the metalcore genre, but for a band who uses clean vocals, and sort of gets away good with it. And i say a metalcore band who uses clean vocals bc honestly, look at other metalcore bands from today who use them, like Woe Is Me, blessthefall, Alesana, and Asking Alexandria. I just named every band that most would call what scene kids listen to, but idc about that. Every one of these bands has a clean vocalist who clearly doesn't quite step up to the plate enough with their singing. I mean, it's just boring, really, and it almost seems as if the screams and sometimes instruments are more focused sometimes. Anyways, The Word Alive, somewhat falls under this category. I think the singing does NEED to get more focused sometimes, which is also why i want to hear more softer, acoustic songs, which would show another side of these guys. It's the same story with all of those other bands named. I think that they do have potential and talent for this tho, and I am not a fan of many of those types of metalcore bands. Im more into Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, August Burns Red, Parkway Drive...that sort of stuff.
    vppark2
    I made a few minor edits to this review that I had originally posted last summer. The number mostly was all.
    BwareDWare94
    EpiExplorer wrote: Amaseng wrote: Abacus11 wrote: vppark2 wrote: Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else. There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap. I just can't think of a good metalcore record that's been released since about 1999. Besides that the genre is doing great. I just haven't heard a good metalcore record since Call me crazy, but somehow I think there's been at least ONE good metalcore record released since 1999. August Burns Red's Constellations and Underoath's Define the Great Line are a couple of examples. Get off your high horse. Those two are far too obvious, and not especially good. Two good albums would be Death of a Dead Day and Summon in Thunder. Hell, even add in Wonder by Knut. Does no one ever explore the underground for good music these days?
    GOD I miss Himsa.
    millarso
    @vppark2 Sorry, if I seem like I'm trying to lord my opinions over you. This is just an area I feel strongly about. And about being a "silly 19 year old", don't worry about that stuff. Keep writing reviews and you'll get the hang of it. Just make sure to take things like production quality, guitarwork, drumwork, and all that jazz into account when you give a rating or people might start freaking out because a band is only as good as its worst member. Unless that member is a bassist. Just kidding, them too.
    vppark2
    upon going back to this review, i honestly regret giving it this high of a rating, and in-turn not even listening to the album much at all nowadays. it was fairly good for the first couple of days when it first came out, but like i said, riffs seem to fall into each other, nothing memorable, and overall the lyrics are so cheesy. i think the problem was that i was a total fanboy (hate to admit it but its true) on their debut album, i just loved everything about it, but again the lyrics seems to be their weakness i noticed. back then i would have given that album a flat out 10, but judging by the lyrics, thats not going to happen at all lol but overall i think i would have given it a 9, this album a 6.5 at best
    xicetraex
    BwareDWare94 wrote: A prescription bottle full of spent shell casings. Who are they trying to convince that they're badasses? Themselves?
    Actually.. the projectile (bullet) is still there.. so they're not spent.
    Abacus11
    vppark2 wrote: Abacus11 wrote: What's up with all of these metalcore reviews? The genre is played out. There are a few metalcore bands still making decent music but 99 percent of it is so stale and boring now. Let's review something else. There's good metalcore bands, and there's bad metalcore bands. It's like every other genre. Im just so sick of hearing ppl complain about how the genre is full of crap.
    I just can't think of a good metalcore record that's been released since about 1999. Besides that the genre is doing great. I just haven't heard a good metalcore record since