Artist: Within the Ruins
Label: E1 Music
Not as many deathcore bands can match the longevity and work ethic of Within the Ruins. The Massachusetts-based quartet has been a band for nearly a decade. Although the group has about as many years under their belt as they’ve had member changes (no really, their Wikipedia page lists about nine previous members), they haven’t lost any steam leading up the release of their third studio album, Elite.
The album starts off with a bang. “Terminal”, the album’s intro track, doesn’t waste any of its minute-long track time to go into a full on beat down mode that sets the pace for the rest of what is to come. “Solace” uses a few production tricks that have been provided by producer Joshua Wickam, through a few choppy effects to enhance the sound coming from the guitars. These same choppy effects find themselves on “New Holy War” shortly after, and find their own unique way to stand out amongst the scattered backdrop of effect-laced riffage and prog-like breakdowns.
One of the major standout tracks on the album is “Ataxia II”, and what makes that almost outlandish is the fact that it’s an instrumental song. As obligatory as they are from each album put out by a metal band, the song has a very unique sound about it. The layers upon layers of well-placed fretwork are what make the song memorable and something to marvel over. Considering the fact that the band only has one sole guitarist, what’s really showcased through the song is axe-man Joe Cocchi’s musicianship. This is later displayed through the inclusion of acoustic guitars for half a minute in the middle of the album’s closing track, “Dreamland”.
The bottom-line is that in spite of the fact that Elite sounds not too different from other music in the deathcore/metalcore scene, the album as a whole is held together with nothing but consistency, intricate songwriting, slight experimentation, and most importantly: passion. If there’s one deathcore album to listen to in the early quarter of 2013, it’s Elite.
Reviewed by: Adrian Garza (Twitter)