Like Moths To Flames

When We Don't Exist

Written by: PP on 26/11/2011 19:21:23

The name Like Moths To Flames is starting to become familiar to those following the metalcore and post-hardcore scenes closely, given the strong promotional push the band are currently receiving from both Nuclear Blast and Warner world-wide. There's of course also Chris Roetter -- you might recall him from Emarosa before they enlisted Jonny Craig as their vocalist -- whose ability to alternate effortlessly between harsh screaming and higher pitch cleans is impressive, even if he isn't near the top-tier of vocalists in either style.

Musically, Like Moths To Flames fit just about in the center of a triangle, whose vertices are The Plot In You, UnderOATH, and A Day To Remember. That is to say, they move freely between uninspiring metalcore chugging and more dynamic, post-hardcore songwriting while occasionally taking a dip into pop-metalcore / pop-hardcore in the vein of ADTR. That's a fine approach if you're trying to create something original, but unfortunately the execution is lacking throughout "When We Don't Exist", because the band are not particularly impressive in any of the styles.

There are songs which concentrate on heavy and increasingly generic metalcore chugging, such as "The Worst In Me", which certainly isn't helped by a questionable production that over-compresses the guitars to sound completely mechanical and inorganic. The consequence is that sections which were designed to sound motherfucking heavy now merely sound generic on record, lacking any real power to slam down the listener. It's a shame in general that Like Moths To Flames engage in passages like this; a song like "Trophy Child" starts out by sounding a lot like "Define The Great Line"-era UnderOATH, but then ruins the high-energy screamo expression with a crawling breakdown that deflates the entire song in an instant.

But when Like Moths To Flames lean closer towards post-hardcore, such as on "GNF" and especially "You Won't Be Missed", they fare much better. The latter, for instance, features a sticky post-hardcore inspired clean chorus that recalls early A Day To Remember to the letter, whereas "Faithless Living" delivers another anthemic chorus section, so the band does know how to write catchy music when they want to.

It's just too bad that they insist on meddling with generic metalcore for large sections of the album. They do it to such an extent that the listener keeps wondering why the band has such severe problems with their identity. The overall expression on "When We Don't Exist" is namely like a mixture of the various bands mentioned in this review, but there isn't a single song which points towards a sound that is unmistakably theirs.

Download: You Won't Be Missed, GNF, No Hope, Faithless Living
For the fans of: The Plot In You, UnderOATH, A Day To Remember
Listen: Myspace

Release date 11.11.2011
Nuclear Blast

Like Moths To Flames - You Won't Be Missed by NuclearBlastRecords

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