Released: June, Metal Blade
Forever in Terror are a young band from Streetsboro, Ohio, who have been recently signed to Metal Blade. These youngsters are already seasoned giggers, having opened for well-established bands like Machine Head, Trivium, God Forbid and Meshuggah, and this is their debut offering RESTLESS IN THE TIDES. Their sound is described as “a mix of modern day metal, black metal and thrash”, which should be liable under any Trade Descriptions Act for being unclear, false and misleading.
The first thing that has to be said about this album is that it is way too long. Clocking in at just under 55 minutes, it is an ambitious effort and they are to be commended for it. Sadly, they do not have the appeal in terms of variety to hold the listener’s interest. The four songs that extend to over 6 minutes could have been pared of at least 2 to 3 minutes each in useless repetition. Their riffing is strictly mediocre metalcore riffing, downtuned, with chug-chug thrash elements. They do mix it up with a few deathcore riffs, with a lot of moshy breakdowns, and that’s the extent to which they vary their sound.
This is not an indictment of them per se: many good bands have survived on one single riff in a song. However these bands usually do not extend beyond a 3 minute headbang-fest, and where the aim is not so much to be progressive as to tear your head off with thrashing madness. Forever in Terror work best when their songs are around the 4 minute mark, which is around the time when I start to lose interest in them. Leads are at a strict premium in the record, and used sparingly. This is probably a good thing, because most of the lead guitar is also unimaginative and provokes the feeling of “heard it before”. An exception is in “Upon Your Grave”, where there is a pretty good (and fresh) lead intro with a nice fast solo in the middle – this is also probably the best song on the album.
But Forever In Terror could be forgiven for their guitarwork, like I said, bands have survived on very minimal riffing. What is truly poor is the vocals. Standard hardcore screaming with occasional death growls, the vocals are monotonous, and worst of all, done with very little conviction or force. What truly gets on my nerves however is the “melodic” emo singing. Granted, this doesn’t happen very often, but when it does I just switch off.
I suppose I should say this band has promise, although I base that more on their age (they’re all 17/18) rather than anything I’ve heard on the record. The one thing that stood out more from the rest was the drumming, and that I can sincerely say stands out. The riffing and the leadwork are repetitive, and the vocalist deserves to be singled out for lacking any kind of punch or impact.