For Fans Of
It’s always good when a band’s debut album lives up to the hype that precedes it, as hype is generally a funny thing that can do as much damage as it can good. Arizona metalcore outfit The Word Alive have nothing to worry about as their debut full length ‘Deceiver’ is a solid release which contains enough original elements to save it from being another throw away metalcore release.
Straight away a stand out feature is vocalist Tyler Smith’s ability to switch between a strong clean singing voice to a brutal growl. Opening track The Hounds Of Anubis, does a good job of introducing Smith’s screams followed quickly by fast guitar riffs and pounding drums. This onslaught of sound continues throughout the entire record, with only a few soft points in the introduction of songs like Consider It Mutual and Dream Catcher, or the album’s ballad, You’re All I See.
Without paying close attention it could be easy to mistake this record musically, for a standard metal release, however it is saved by certain quirks, such as its synthesiser and electronica use. Tracks like 2012 use these instruments to create sounds that sound out of place, in a good way, because they are unexpected. The heaviest moments of the record are also the highlights, The Wretched explodes with full bodied guitars and gang vocals whilst Battle Royale, an updated version of a song from the band’s debut EP ‘Empire,’ steals the show by combining all of the best moments this group has to offer.
This record is the band’s first release with new drummer Justin Salinas, and the drumming is unfortunately, the most un-original part of the music, with Salinas opting for the standard “double kick metal” attack for the majority of the album, acting as more of a support for everything else. The record ends with We Know Who You Are, the longest song on the album, perhaps a little too long as it recycles a few of the ideas used previously, but does contain a neat little atmospheric breakdown which builds into a thundering finale.
‘Deceiver’ lives up to its hype and is an impressive debut for The Word Alive, metal fans will find plenty here to both satisfy and surprise, keeping that good old metalcore spark alive for a little bit longer.
1. The Hounds Of Anubis
3. The Wretched
4. Consider It Mutual
6. Dream Catcher
7. Like Father Like Son
8. Battle Royale
9. You’re All I See
10. You Know Who You Are