Iâm going to be honest: as a whole, Iâm not a big fan of the metalcore genre, but there are several amazing metalcore bands. Just to list off a few of my favorite metalcore bands, thereâs Miss May I
, Threat Signal
, Mnmeic, Killswitch Engage
, Oh, Sleeper
, Eyes Set to Kill
, and Atreyu
. Although there are others I enjoy listening too (like As I Lay Dying
and God Forbid
), those are ones that are most worthy of mentioning. Iâm not an elitist in any kind of way, but Iâm not too keen on the majority of the âgenericâ metalcore scene. I do like some bands from this area of the genre, but 97% of them seem to be either terrible or purely mediocre. Well, a week ago, I had one of those âoh what the hellâ moments and decided to give a few of these generic metalcore bands that Iâve passed up for so long a listen. Iâm not going to be considering this a series, but the first one Iâll be reviewing is I the Breather
It seems that the generic metalcore sound has changed since I last remember. I remember the generic metalcore sound as being not so heavy and somewhat simple chord progressions (if any) like All that Remains, Atreyu
, I Killed the Prom Queen, and Haste the Day (all of whom I used to really likeâ¦except for I Killed the Prom Queenâ¦I only ever enjoyed one song by them). Now, the generic metalcore sound seems to be MUCH heavier, much more breakdown-based, much more Christian, and much, much simpler. Some people have gone to call these bands âhardcoreâ, a term that I personally despise. But Iâm not here to rant about how the metalcore genre has evolved and transformed, Iâm here to talk about one of the newer generic metalcore bands, I the Breather
Iâve known about them for a while, maybe four months or so. But the thought of checking them out never crossed my mind. Now that Iâve listened to this album dozens of times over the past week, Iâve come to the conclusion that I the Breather
is just another metalcore band, but theyâre not quite EXACTLY what I expected them to be. Before I get into the majority of the album, which can be summed up in just a few sentences, I want to tell you about my first experience listening to the first track on the album, because I was so surprised that I had to restart the song before it was halfway through to make sure I wasnât imagining things. The first song, False Prophet
, starts off with a very soft keyboard/guitar line that I predicted would be playing in the background for the duration of the track. Then, the vocals kicked in and the extremely low-tuned guitars started chugging away like a bomb went off in my face. In other words, the first 1 Â¼ minutes of this song were surprisingly powerful and epic.
Iâve been listening to these bands in anticipation to find the diamond in the rough, and during this song, a smile formed upon my face and I thought I had found the glimmering gem. After the intro âbreakdownâ I was waiting for it to be more than just breakdowns, and it turns out that this isnât one of those âbreakdown after breakdownâ kind of bands. But after False Prophet
ends, things start taking a not-so-good direction. First of all, the vocals arenât really that good. The songs eventually start to drag on and become VERY repetitive and bland, which is easy to do with an epic sound like the one False Prophet
brings. The drummer seems to be really unfocused on a lot of the tracks, which leads to confusion on whether the band is out of time or the drummer is falling behind. Once I finished the record, I was extremely disappointed at how False Prophet
raised the bar so high and have none of the songs even come close to touching the bar with their fingertips.
The majority of these generic metalcore bands seem to worship and idolize August Burns Red
(which is respectable because they are pretty damn amazing). Hereâs the problem that I have with all these bandsâ obsession with ABR: not only do they worship and fight to be one of the openers on the bandâs next tour, but they create an EXREMELY similar (but not nearly as good and not nearly as technical) sound to ABR, which has led to what the world knows as the modern metalcore blueprint. Thatâs right people, August Burns Red
might not be as big, but theyâve definitely become more influential than All that Remains, Killswitch Engage
, Sonic Syndicate
, As I Lay Dying
, and (dare I say) Bullet
for my Valentine
. And I the Breather
is nothing more than another brick in the wall of the ABR-influenced generic metalcore scene.
For those of you diehard metalcore fans that arenât TOO picky but know a terrible band when they hear it, this album should be fairly easy to enjoy. I would give this album 9/20 for being nowhere near being the worst metalcore album ever, but nowhere near being something I would recommend and show to any of my friends. If youâre SUPER curious about what False Prophet
sounds like, I think itâs a pretty fucking epic song and would at most recommend that one song.