I keep waiting...waiting. Purchasing. Waiting some more. Still UNEARTH seems intent on keeping me waiting. Eventually, these very talented musicians will unleash a Metalcore album truly worth its weight instead of the continuous works of mediocrity that are pumped out under the name. Looks like I'm going to have to keep waiting past 2011, as "Darkness In The Light" is another average Metalcore release to add to their catalog.
Not that "Darkness In The Light" is anything more than it should be. In fact, UNEARTH remains one of the more consistent bands within the genre. Their ability to blend Hardcore inspired energy (and break downs galore) and drive through the barking vocals, punch riffs, and drum laden fist-pumping anthems with the technicality and melodic touches of classic Metal still inspires listeners to why Metalcore became such a monumental movement in the '00s. Songs like "Watch It Burn" with its head banging chorus and "Shadows In The Light" spark with that intensity that makes the genre work. The band's musicianship within this ideology is respectable as they utilize their talents to perform the style with vigor.
Yet, release after release fails to truly lift the band above their peers. Just like the rest of their catalog, "Darkness In The Light" seems content to remain within the box. It produces enough solid music as is, but it fails to spark the genre to be one of the better releases even for the band. This album is solid at its basics, but more often than not, the band seems to just take the talent through the motions here with rather uninspired fire. UNEARTH crafts this release to contain some great tracks (the previously mentioned tracks included), but its heavily bogged down with filler that muddles the overall experience.
For fans of the band or those still willing to stand firmly beside the Metalcore banner, "Darkness In The Light" is another solid enough release from a band that made the genre what it is. It's a shoe in for those folks. For the rest of us, it's just another mediocre release from a band that should be taking the genre to new heights of heart and soul.
Songs to check out: "Watch It Burn," "Shadows In The Light," "Arise The War Cry."
(Online September 13, 2011)