Released: Sep 13, 2011
Genre: Metalcore, Post-Hardcore, Symphonic Metal, Electronica
Label: Equal Vision (North America), Nuclear Blast (Europe), We Are Unified (Australia)
Number Of Tracks: 12
From the opening track "Mis//Understanding" to the closing title track "Understanding What We've Grown To Be", We Came As Romans deliver a great sophomore follow up to their 2009 debut "To Plant A Seed".
Understanding What We've Grown To Be
KsE909, on september 22, 2011 3 of 5 people found this review helpful
Sound: From the opening track "Mis//Understanding" to the closing title track "Understanding What We've Grown To Be", We Came As Romans deliver a great sophomore follow up to their 2009 debut "To Plant A Seed". The production was done by veteran metalcore/post-hardcore producer Joey Sturgis. Traditional in Joey Sturgis' work, the drums are loud and clean, the guitars are beefy, and the vocals are topnotch. If you are a fan of post-hardcore/metalcore than you will not be disappointed with this album. Fans of traditional metal will complain about the whiney clean vocals of Kyle Pavone, and the breakdown formula of this style of music. Which is why I do not recommend this album to fans of more traditional metal (keep listening to your Slayer albums and keep quiet for one review please). // 9
Lyrics: Guitarist Joshua Moore is the main lyricist for the band, most of the lyrics coming from his own personal struggles he had on and off the road (Joshua was hospitalized for some time and had to miss a lot of tour dates). The lyrics have a "dark to light" feel, which also flows perfectly with the tone of every song.
"Mis//Understanding" - Lyrics are stating how lost and confused he is with his life, and he struggles with the thought of whether this is the right lifestyle for him "Six years ago I married a bride, and I'm not sure she was meant to be mine."
"Everything As Planned" - He struggles with sleeping at night, wondering how life would have been if everything had gone according to plan. He begs to be told that he can love himself and others. "The one thing I wanted most was lost because of my own irresponsibility."
"What I Wish I Never Had" - He struggles with the rage and anger he has inside of him, and how he takes it out on those that do not deserve it. He wishes to rid himself of the demons that live inside of him. "These demons will never leave me, I can only find ways to not let them out. I control them, not the other way around."
"Cast The First Stone" - He strains to keep the blame away from himself and his actions, and he wonders how he looks to others. "I'll cast the first stone, like I am the last one to blame, just to break their denouncing gaze."
"The Way That We Have Been" - He knows that the relationships he had with people were not perfect, but every moment he spent with them was more than worth it. He wishes to take the first step to a new beginning. "Taking the first step is always the hardest part, when we've been digging our way down instead of digging our way out."
"A War Inside" - This is the turning point of the album, he realizes that through his struggles he listened to the devil on his shoulder, but has finally opened his ear to the angel on his shoulder. "And so I've shown you my heart, will you restore me?"
"Stay Inspired" - He begins to realize that there is more to life than keeping yourself sheltered because you are afraid of the risk of getting hurt. "There are greater rewards in coexistence."
"Just Keep Breathing" - Here he realizes that even though things can get so rough, that as long as he is still breathing it isn't as bad as it could be. "Am I still breathing? Then nothing is as bad as it seems."
"Views That Never Cease, To Keep Me From Myself" - This song references previous lyrics that Moore has written, and this song seems to be a continuance of them. Here he realizes that it is time to move on and to be better, to get past the times that he has fallen down and to pick himself up and move forward. "What is the measure of a man? Is it wading through the worst, or is the measure of a man admitting when he is defeated?"
"What My Heart Held" - This is where he acknowledges the people who have helped him through his struggles and through his difficult times. "You were always there to help me hold up this earth, every time it weighs me down."
"I Can't Make Your Decisions For You" - Here he comes to terms that sometimes you have to let others lead their own lives, that no matter how many times you try to help them, sometimes they have to help themselves to get better. "I can't make your decisions for you, I can only encourage action."
"Understanding What We've Grown To Be" - As the album comes to an end, so do his struggles. He knows that this is the reason he is alive, this is what he was meant to do, and that although he has been broken, he knows he can be made new. "Tonight, when I look into the sky, I know, this is why I am alive. So sing with me if you feel this feeling. I'm ALIVE." // 10
Overall Impression: This album was highly anticipated, and it lived up to the anticipation. They have all grown as musicians and as song writers. This is a solid sophomore effort and the boys in WCAR should be proud of what they have created. It is a much stronger album then To Plant A Seed, and is in a sense heavier and lighter. Every song tells a little bit of the story and the journey of Joshua Moore. The most impressive songs on this album would have to be "The Way That We Have Been", "A War Inside", "Views That Never Cease, To Keep Me From Myself", and "Understanding What We've Grown To Be".
What I love most about this album is the lyrics and the drums. They are utterly mind blowing. Eric Choi has some sick chops, and he really knows how to keep it flowing. I can honestly not find anything about this album that I hate. The artwork is wonderful, the sound is clear and crisp, the vocals have good timbre, everything is pretty much flawless. Trust me, if I lost this album, I'd buy it again in a heartbeat. If you are fan of the core genres, then this is the album for you. If you are a traditional metal fan, then why did you even click the link? Pick this album up, buy a shirt, see them live, do something. // 10
Understanding What We've Grown To Be
gavintaylorsyxx, on september 26, 2011 2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: Overall this album is immensely entertaining, they've still got the same classic WCAR sound, but they perfected it 200%. They've lowered their tuning to Drop B, which makes it sound great. The song "Understanding What We've Grown To Be" kinda gives off the sound of "96 Quite Bitter Beings" by CKY at the beginning, but overall it is a good song. The instrumentals are great, and this is a must buy for any fan of the Post Hardcore music. // 10
Lyrics: The clean vocalist is still on top, and so is the screamer, they're still keeping everything original and not trying to change it up as much. As far as lyrics go, you have to read them in order to understand them, you can hear them, but when he screams, the deepest lyrics flow. // 10
Overall Impression: This is great high quality music, I would definitely recommend it to anyone, especially "Mis//Understanding". // 10