Album Review: As They Burn – Will, Love, Life
As They Burn, the French six-piece Deathcore outfit released their latest 37-minute opus called Will, Love, Life. The album title is poignant in these earthly trying times though it sounds more like something a Pop artist would use. Despite the lack of a metal-induced album name, it just takes a few seconds to realize As They Burn is not your neighborhood metal band. Or are they? Their latest work does have a bit of flavor emanating from many new Deathcore bands such as Emmure or Devil Wears Prada…insert similar band names here. But, overall there is something else behind the scenes that kept me listening much longer than I would have for (other) similar styled bands.
This is one of those albums that took a few songs for me to get used to. I wasn’t initially impressed with the first song Medicine 2.0. I won’t get into depth as to why, but it didn’t grab me like the lead-off track should do. However, as I started to hear a bit more depth than the bone-crunch-riff-scream-repeat syndrome, my level of interest increased. I dare say the band has a djenty flavor to them and though not my favorite metal subgenre, it does give As They Burn a bit more of an edge over their competitors.
The Conscious Man is probably the stand-out song on the album. There are several different elements going on here besides the standard crunchy blast overdose. The keys and programming added cool atmospheric elements; a song I will want to hear in the future. I felt the same about Isis; another cool song both heavy (thrashy) and softer in some spots.
When Everything Falls Apart is what you will see and hear with the lyric video below. It’s one of the strongest songs and features more commercialized zest than some of the other songs on the album. It’s one of the few songs encroaching on the four-minute mark which, in my opinion, contains enough elements to classify it as an actual song. With When Everything Falls Apart, you get a sample of some of the atmospheric and programming elements found throughout the album. F.R.E.A.K.S features a guest appearance from Emmure’s vocalist…so, I am sure you can imagine what that song sounds like…short and to the point.
One of the main problems I have with bands in the same ballpark with As They Burn is their albums tend to be short. I can make an exception due to the sheer heaviness of the album because it just a crushing experience. I am not sure I would want listen to this for an hour. Where As They Burn differs is they have some songs that are much longer (almost 4 minutes) which isn’t really that long, but much longer than bands like Emmure. I would rather listen to 11 songs that are longer than say 15 shorter songs. Though not my particular style, overall it’s not a bad album. For bands in this particular metal subgenre, As They Burn stands out among their peers.