A Deathgrip On Yesterday

Written by: PP on 27/03/2006 03:53:39

We all remember Orange County's Atreyu from their great, trend-setting albums "Suicide Notes & Butterfly Kisses" and "The Curse". They were among the bands who kickstarted the recently skyrocketed metalcore scene together with the likes of Killswitch Engage and Avenged Sevenfold, and are arguably one of the biggest bands in the scene at the moment. Now, after 1½ years of the release of "The Curse", the band is back with a 32 minute long outing featuring nine tracks, namely "A Deathgrip On Yesterday".

Due to the success the band has achieved to date, they had a much bigger budget for recording "A Deathgrip On Yesterday". It is evident on the better production, which has removed the razorsharp edge from Alex's thrown up vocals, which now sound much less rough, although still too brutal for any kind of airplay in the European radios. Songs like "My Fork In The Road (Your Knife In My Back)" and "Our Sick Story" reconfirm the fact that Atreyu's lead guitarist is a very good one, despite all the bashers of the genre.

What I don't understand, however, is why the band included, let alone wrote, "The Theft" on the album. It's slow, it's aggression nears the zero-level and it's full of cheezy clean singing much more fitting to a band like Hawthorne Heights than Atreyu. The beginning sounds like it could be used in a ballet or figure-skating. It's the only song that's clearly penned with the radio and the mainstream in mind, and makes me wanna take their cd with me to an ultimate frisbee match with my friends.

But an even bigger problem with "A Deathgrip On Yesterday" is the lack of originality presented on the album. It's the logical continuation from "The Curse", only without such instant classics like "Bleeding Mascara" or "My Sanity On The Funeral Pyre". Sure, there are good songs on it, and sure, it will boost them and the genre even further to the mainstream, but for critics, that just isn't good enough. There's just something missing that was on the original albums. It just doesn't kick you in the face in the same way as the old ones, or want to make you play air guitar while bouncing off the walls of your room anymore. A lackluster effort.


Download: My Fork In The Road (Your Knife In My Back), Creature
For the fans of: Killswitch Engage, It Dies Today
Listen: Myspace, Purevolume

Release date 28.03.2006
Victory Records

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