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3/10 Mladen

ARISE AND RUIN - The Final Dawn - CD - Victory Records - 2007

review by: Mladen Škot

It won't make a big footnote in music history, but one of the things 2007 will be remembered by will be numerous metalcore bands struggling to remain important by incorporating more and more old-school influences, technical competence and more diverse song structures.

Latest example: Arise and Ruin. Even looking at the artwork, it's clear where these five Americans try to go — pointless band name, a dark digital image with some kind of a coat of arms... and two horses — okay, one point in originality for the horsies. Other than that, it's the same old same old. You've got Swedish riffs and sound, you've got Meshuggah riffs, you've got the mouthy growler and finally the confused drummer.

What you don't get is the songs. Now, at least twice in this issue I've complained how the bands with basic pop structures ought to be shot. Now it's time to complain about the opposite: playing one part after the other without noticeable dynamics, tempo changes or just some plain old adrenalin exhilaration is just as bad. Don't do that, either.

One example would be the opening track: Why bringing false hopes and starting a song like fast openings of Gorefest or Vomitory if you're just gonna go into some staccato, then slower and slower into "powerful" slow chords and end it like there was no beginning at all? And that's the one good song on The Final Dawn. The others just go in their set tempos and still everything seems static. The structures can be diverse, as already said, but the parts don't really have a connection between each other. Sincerity and memorability are non-existent, and the only points of some interest will be the Meshuggah parts, admittedly quite imaginative. But they sound like they don't belong on The Final Dawn. Now, make an album from just these and we'll talk.

For just some non-demanding thrashing, Arise and Ruin do a decent job. Now someone tell me what's the point in waiting for all those bands to finally admit that there's better music right now, just like there was before, and that they are really going nowhere. Will all this simply disappear the way nu-metal did, or slowly evolve into something unexpected? Keep an eye on the reviews in 2008. (3/10)


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