All That Remains

Madness

Written by: PP on 22/08/2017 21:21:13

Almost ten years separated from their genre masterpiece "The Fall Of Ideals", All That Remains are a shadow of their former glory on eighth album "Madness". Let's think about what made the former album so revered within the metalcore scene: awe-inspiring fretwork and mouth watering riffs, coupled with Philip Labonte's throaty, yet melodic screams and infectious chorus melodies laid on top. It was a near-perfect album in metalcore that has stood the test of time, even if releasing the same album 2017 wouldn't make any sense because of the saturated state that the genre has been for at least seven years now.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. "Madness" is a schizophrenic mixture between arena metal and, get this, post-grunge or whatever the heck it is you call Nickelback these days. I'm not kidding. Take a listen to "If I'm Honest", for instance. It's a horribly misplaced (track 4!) acoustic ballad that reeks of generic songwriting and cheesy atmosphere, not to even mention it actually sounds literally like a Nickelback radio hit. The same goes for "Far From Home" that rivals Staind in its melancholic post-grunge croons. "Back To You" also - what's up with an overload of acoustic guitars on a metal album anyway? What were they thinking?

The other extreme is best exemplified by the title track, "Madness", which sounds so much like Five Finger Death Punch they ought to sue All That Remains for outright theft of their arena-sized, mass-friendly sing-along metal. "Halo", another song in that vein, is at least attempting to blend some authentic All That Remains material into the mix by introducing the occasional throaty metalcore scream, but it's basically just like 5FDP during its chorus. "River City" even more so.

So what happened to all that electrifying metalcore characterized by the tightest innovative riffs and memorable songwriting? There are a couple of candidates on the record that qualify, but regrettably, they end up sounding like generic metalcore instead. Track eleven, "Drive By", at least attempts to go back to slaying riffs and growls, but honestly sounds so tired and cliché when it comes to metalcore that comparing to modern genre heavyweights like Architects or While She Sleeps is completely pointless. As a longtime fan of the band, "Madness" is an extremely difficult listen, primarily because it's a cringeworthy radio rock release from a band that once were crowned the kings of metalcore.

5

Download: Safe House, Madness, Halo, Drive By
For the fans of: Five Finger Death Punch, Nickelback, Staind
Listen: Facebook

Release date 28.04.2017
Razor & Tie

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