If somebody were to tell me ten years ago that a band I barely liked because I thought their sound wasn’t polished enough and their songwriting was way to basic would turn into As I Lay Dying I would tell you that they were a fool and that they need to never listen to heavy metal again.
As I Lay Dying are back with their new album “Awakened” which means that everybody needs to be awakened to just how good the band has become! Vocalists Tim Lambesis and Josh Gilbert work off of each other perfectly and have added the best dimensions the band has ever had. The album is brutal, heavy, melodic, and in certain parts beautiful. I thought the last album from the band, “The Powerless Rise” could not be topped. Well friends, I am here to admit that I was god damn wrong. THIS is the best album the band has put out to date.
From the opening track “Cauterized” which starts out with Time “Lambeast” Lambesis screaming over blast beats and some of the fastest riffs the band has put out to the melodic powerhouse of the last track “Tear Out My Eyes” the band shows you that they are going to combine brutal metal, complex riffs, blistering solos, and powerful melody into a masterpiece. This album has transcended the metalcore logo and in my eyes moved into melodic death metal. The day I downloaded the album I listened to it six times and am somewhere near a total or 15 or so listens in a week.
You can’t find a bad song on this album. “No Lungs to Breathe” is a melodic, dual vocal powerhouse, “Overcome” is Josh Gilberts time to shine as his chorus really soars over anything else that is going on in the song, and then there is “Resilience” which sees Lambesis using his entire vocal range in one of the best performances of his career.
In something that I would not have guessed could be a contender for my album of the year I have found excellence. From start to finish the band has shown that they have perfected their sound into something not heard in metal today. They have transcended the ranks of metalcore and really exploded their sound into something bigger and better. As I Lay Dying is a heavy metal band, plain and simple.