(NCS contributor Israel Flanders has found an album by a deathcore band that he actually likes — a lot.)
All Shall Perish is one of those deathcore bands everyone always tells you DON’T suck massive loads of horse shit through a straw, at least from my experience. If I get into a conversation with someone about whether such a thing as “good” deathcore exists, this band always is mentioned. I never really checked them out before, but for purposes of this review I actually tracked down the discography up until now and listened to it to evaluate this new album, This Is Where It Ends. My conclusion: All Shall Perish sucked massive loads of horse shit through a straw . . . until this album.
There is a HUGE line-up change here to take into account, and that is Jason Richardson, now of Born Of Osiris, leaving and in-coming a guitarist by the name of Francesco Artusato. He put out a solo album recently before this album, and if you are familiar with that solo album you know this dude DESTROYS UNIVERSES! But to get back on topic . . . this album rules.
This is a whole new band. The musical similarities between this and their last album, Awaken The Dreamers, are almost nil, if not totally absent. There is a lot of speed here, a lot of ultimately pure melodeath moments, and a good dose of that death metal atonality, but it feels genuine here — when it comes to the death metal elements on this album, I don’t get that manufactured, half-assed deathcore feel I usually complain about. (more after the jump . . .)
There is A TON of powerful riffing here, and yes, breakdowns that don’t bore me to tears. The opening song “Divine Illusion” IMMEDIATELY — from second 1 to end — assaults you with fast, ferocious, 8-string riffing and has no mercy except for the chanting in the chorus of “Your God can’t save you!” over a ferocious sledgehammer of a breakdown. Oh yeah, there is god-status shred from Francesco present.
The next song, “There Is Nothing Left”, blisters with At The Gates-styled fury combined with some excellent melodies — oh, and more god-status shred madness. Next is what I recall being the first single off this album, “Procession Of Ashes”, which turns the dial back a bit to a more groovy deathcore feel. This song would fail if it weren’t for Francesco Artusato’s fantastic leads throughout, but especially i the pre-chorus; that tapping lick has badass written all over it. I also love the somber clean section that closes out the song.
“A Pure Evil” brings back the speed as well as a heavy emphasis on Francesco’s shred ability. LOTS of interspersed sweeping and tapping sections that really mix up the song and keep it creative. As you could guess, I’m basically saying this dude keeps this album alive (which he really does). It’s obvious to me that he has breathed new life into this band that they desperately needed. I should also note at this point that new drummer Adam Pierced has got the chops to deliver the brutal sonic massacre essential to back what’s going on here. I REALLY like the sudden drop and increase again in tempo for the solo of this song.
Vocalist Hernan Hermida sounds WAY better on this album than before. He sounds precise, he sounds visceral, and he sounds pissed. I never cared for him on the band’s previous albums, but something about him on It All Ends Here just hits home. The music on this album is also precise and visceral, demonstrating more than anything else that All Shall Perish really wanted to go for the throat with this one.
Welp, it’s about time to close things out. This is a good album, this is good deathcore, and this is an album worth checking out. It is definitely this band’s pinnacle, at least for now, and it definitely represents what I want to hear from more deathcore bands. I haven’t heard an album in the genre this legit-sounding since Carnifex‘s Hell Chose Me.
Check out these two songs from It All Ends Here.
I’m pretty impressed by this album. The riffage covers a lot of melodic ground without being afraid to utilize some eccentric, techy bits that you don’t hear often in this kind of stuff. However, I agree with you that the thing that REALLY maintains this album’s awesomeness is Francesco’s lead work. Pretty much every time things start to get a bit slow, here comes some insane soloing to send you reeling into oblivion.
I’ve never been one for deathcore, or any sort of “core”, prog metal, or guitar virtuoso. However, I enjoyed the last ASP album enough to buy it and this one looks to impress as well. It’s not something I listen to regularly, but it’s definitely really fun to blast in your car and bang your head to. However, I’m not hearing any of those epic 80’s screams from the last album I loved so much. (1:30 – 1:45 on “Black Gold Reign”). Waiting to hear the epic brootul track off of this album as well. “Stabbing to Purge Dissemination” was my favorite off the last. Super intense all the way through with the biggest fuckin breakdown at the end.
Alright, I’ve tried to put into words how I feel about this album and its place next to Awaken the Dreamers several times now and I’m having a bitch of a time. I love Awaken the Dreamers. It put deathcore on the map for me. It has several clear, memorable moments for me that resonate in ways few other albums do. In that regard, I don’t think This is Where it Ends will ever top it for me.
That said, I appreciate this album a little bit more each time I listen to it. And I can’t help but feel that in due time I’ll find those catchy, resonant bits in this album. The drumming’s faster and technically stronger. The vocals are as good as they’ve ever been, if not better. The leads are completely solid and, while I prefer the style on Awaken the Dreamers a bit more, they’re still excellent. There’s really nothing I can say I dislike about the album.
If anything, my complaints with the album are in its omissions. Like Sean, I do miss the 80’s screams. And even though this may be No Clean Singing, I miss the clean singing. I’d kill for another Memories of a Glass Sanctuary.
Was that last line of the review supposed to be sarcastic? I really hope you were joking about Carnifex being anywhere near this good…
Everyone’s about to be mad buuuuuut:
Wooo, by the numbers melodic death metal now with flavor of the month djent influences complete with an 8-string. Wouldn’t really care but The Contortionist already did this super well last year, not to mention that amazing Danza album.
Hernan sounds a lot more like Trevor of TBDM on this release (those sing-songy high runs), and less like some kind of murderous robot (not sure if this is good or bad).
Most of the breakdowns feel super tacked on and uninspired.
Holy shit that new dude can shred.
Their first album sounded legit, some slam, some 90’s hardcore, some melodic death, but everything since has felt like they’re ashamed to be deathcore and they try to play down the hardcore/slam influence. Even this, the solos sound great and then there’s breakdowns tacked on that sound limp as shit and the riffs don’t feel like they have any fucking muscle. If you’re hardcore influenced and play breakdowns fine, but if you’re gonna do it, do it right.