Emmure – Eternal Enemies (Victory Records)Tuesday, 6th May 2014
Welcome to the nu-metal revival! Well, perhaps a bit heavier than nu-metal but simplistic all the same. Down-tuned power chords and breakdowns galore set the stage for Emmure. Some occasional electronics and turntable elements sneak through the incessantly chugging guitars. Most of the guitar “riffs” sound pretty interchangeable, seemingly there more just to provide background “heaviness” to lay the vocal tracks on top of. Among the fifteen tracks, you’d be hard pressed to identify them if you took the vocals away, a true indicator of how “poppy” the music actually is despite it’s outward appearance.
Then we have the vocals. Going from growls, to tough guy posturing, to screams, to borderline rapping, they are schizophrenic at best. The variety could be to the band’s favor, but the changeovers from growl to tough guy talking to rapping have no coherent rhyme or reason and are occasionally laugh inducing (or cringe inducing, your call). The lyrics are nothing short of insulting, with gems such as, “So if you wanna see me fail, I’ll say it nice and loud; eat dick,” or “You stupid fucking slut, it’s no surprise, daddy doesn’t love you enough,” as well as, “I’m the realest motherfucker in the game.” As someone who deals with eighth graders all day, this stuff makes their bantering seem like the work of rocket scientists. That’s not even to mention the completely “look at me and give me attention” poor taste lyrics of “Bring a Gun to School” (which the band was forced to rename “Untitled”).
So in conclusion, your satisfaction with Eternal Enemies boils down to a few key questions. Do you gain enjoyment out of the conceptually rich and detailed lyrics of bands like Pyrrhon? Do you seek out complex and challenging guitar riffs as found on Conquering Dystopia or even the melodic sorrow of Insomnium? Do you do blast hands as you listen to Fleshgod Apocalypse? Lastly, do you like to “bounce” and break stuff? If you said no to all of the following except the last question, congratulations! You may have just found your new favorite band (look inside the album for your coupon for a free visit to your local psychiatrist)! This is the type of album that makes people think that metal is “just noise” and “unintelligent.” Pure drivel.