For Fans Of
There was always going to be a degree of subjectivity when reviewing this release. I have been a big fan of August Burns Red since 2005’s ‘Thrill Seeker’ and have found the bands blend of progressive metal and metallic hardcore refreshing in a genre otherwise lacking vitality.
New EP ‘Lost Messengers’ slots nicely between 2007’s critically acclaimed ‘Messengers’ and the band’s forthcoming third studio album in 2009 (fingers crossed). Premised as a collection of B-sides and demos from previous albums, ‘Lost Messengers’ features a mix of new songs, rock parodies and unmixed samples.
Listeners be warned there is not much in the way of new material here. A track list boasting only seven songs is reflective of a simple principle: to give fans some musical appetisers before a new album.
Hailing from Lancaster, Pennsylvania; better known for its large Amish community than its music, ABR follow in the footsteps of established peers such as Misery Signals and As I Lay Dying to combine a predominant metal sound with odd time signatures, catchy licks and strong breakdowns.
Opener ‘Chasing the Dragon’ is perhaps pre-empting a shift towards a more technical metal sound. The bands trademark breakdowns are replaced by solid guitar sweeps and constant tempos. Moreover, any band that can make a Christmas carol sound rock deserves major props.
Concurrently, ‘To those about to Rock’ is a parody of the southern rock scene.
Although this release will not increase the bands reputation, it will not harm it either. August Burns Red is fast becoming the saints of the Christian metal scene (pardon the pun).
With only two new songs, ‘Lost Messengers’ is essentially a release intended only for pre-existing fans. Whilst enjoyable, if you want to hear August Burn Red doing what they do best, pick up ‘Messengers’ instead.
- Chasing the Dragon
- Carol of the Bells
- To Those About to Rock
- Piano Man
- Truth of a Liar (demo)
- Vital Signs (demo)