Hailing from the dusty and prosperous state of Arizona, these young guns began materializing on bills with such mighty bands as NECROPHAGIST and ION DISSONANCE literally overnight. So, when I decided to check out their music, I was expecting some phenomenally talented young musicians and needless to say, the listen concluded with a bitter taste in my mouth and a lot of hand washing.
To be honest, I had no idea what band I was listening to, because other "Myspace luminaries" such as ELYSIA, SUICIDE SILENCE and UNDERNEATH THE GUN are nearly identical. The first thing I hear is a little flurry of low C notes (usually indicative of a 'dropped' guitar tuning, popular in this "genre"), followed by some minor third hammer-ons. So far, so routine. Oops, here comes the blast beats. And...more blast beats. Some diminished tremolo picking. A breakdown. One can pick up THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER influence almost immediately, especially in the vocal department, with the addition of some "bree bree bree" pig squeals that are very irritating to my ears. Mixing those with some very Spongebob Squarepants-sounding high screams had me reeling. The remaining songs on the EP offered little in the way of variation, to my dismay.
Ultimately, this band seems like another tragic example of AT THE GATES worship gone wrong. THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER mimics the original, becomes extremely popular and then this new generation mimics the mimickers and what was one cherished about the Melodic Death style of music in America continues to be watered down until it arrives in this present, almost unrecognizable form. I have nothing against the so-called "Deathcore" style, as I myself am a huge fan of bands like SKINLESS and MISERY INDEX, which mix brutal Death Metal elements with the grooves and tasteful breakdowns of a band more like, say, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE. Also, there was nothing horrendously sloppy about the performance of JOB FOR A COWBOY on this disc, but I couldn't help being bored to tears. From the new material I've heard, as well, the band continues to bite off more than they can chew; as displayed by the forced and painfully sloppy sweep-picked arpeggios (which do not match the song in any way, just another example of bandwagon-hopping Metalcore copy-and-paste writing).
They have all the popular elements that are all the rage among the throngs of white belt-wearing spinkickers (blasts, sweeps, the "bree bree"s, breakdowns), but ultimately, this band lacks substance and fails to provide a breath of fresh air or anything valuable. I don't predict that this band will last long merely riding trends unless they decide to completely overhaul their sound, but until then, they're going to keep playing the big bills and racking up (literally) hundreds of thousands of plays and download on their Myspace and website. (Online August 9, 2006)