A LIFE ONCE LOST explores every negative characteristic of the Metalcore genre in "Open Your Mouth For The Speechless". The band focuses on aggression and ugliness rather than composition or structure, and the result is a chaotic string of advanced drumming patterns with experimental guitar work in dropped tuning. Flat heavy tones accentuate the guitaristsí conscious decisions to play without vibrato while the calm and more reflective moments of the album show little potential for further development. The continual evolution of each song into a stream of crunches and grinds hints at the bandís ability to motivate crowds but does not translate well into purely audible media.
The vocals come across as over-distorted and unintelligible, which shames the entire production considering that free-verse lyrical writing seems a natural asset for the band. The intent to match ugly subject matter with appropriate vocal intonations detracts from listener receptiveness and forces the curious to pull the lyric sheet.
All in all, "Open Your Mouth For The Speechless" fails to capitalize on A LIFE ONCE LOSTís strengths while in fact promoting the bandís weaknesses. Later works show maturity, but the problems with this recording stem from conscious decisions and it is unlikely that we will see any change for future releases.
(Online March 3, 2007)