I haven’t heard anything Suicide Silence have done since their 2009 album No Time to Bleed, so was very interested to finally catch up with them once more. I didn’t expect them to be the same band, of course, and they really aren’t.
The deathcore sound that they helped forge is still present and correct in some aspects of the music, but like all of the best bands that originally played in that style, they have evolved beyond this.
I’ve previously stated that deathcore, in its purest form, can be quite one dimensional and get boring really quickly, which is why it’s great to hear when a band takes the style and does something else with it. In the case of Suicide Silence’s fifth album, this means keeping the core of aggression and heaviness that the style has and expanding on it, adding a spooky atmosphere and some quite individual clean vocals, to name just a couple of things you’ll find here.
On the face of it this might give some potential listeners pause given the band’s history and background, but trust me it all works a treat. This album is one of those rare ones where you immediately know you’re listening to something a bit special, and subsequent listens only back this up further.
If you take the band’s deathcore origins, add in elements of Deftones and Slipknot, then you’ll have a good idea of what the Suicide Silence of 2017 sounds like. The great thing is that none of these influences sound plagiarised though, and everything on this album sounds natural and unforced.
Like the best of albums, each track has its own personality and style. Each one is well-written and differentiates itself easily from its neighbouring songs. Taken holistically, the same thing can be said for the album as a whole. The band have done their utmost to inject this release with as much personality and individual flair as possible, and I’m very happy to say that they’ve pulled off that very rare feat; here’s a band that now have pretty much their own sound.
All of the band members put in good performances on this record, but particular mention must go to their singer. Screams, growls, shouts and all manner of violent eruptions are very well-delivered; his performance is absolutely first rate, and you can feel the energy he’s giving off in waves. When it comes to his clean vocals they’re just as diverse, and he frequently blurs the line between singing and screaming. His voice is used like a weapon, dripping with emotion and deadly to the touch.
The production is a lot less polished than you might expect for a high-profile release such as this, and it’s all the better for it. Overall this album has a murky shine to it that fits the music perfectly. This sounds less like the latest release from a very well-selling band, and more like the debut album from a young, hungry metal band with ambition and dark passion to burn.
Well, this is way better than I ever expected it to be. Suicide Silence is first class all the way.