Suicide Silence has long enjoyed splitting the opinion of the heavy metal public.
The argument for and against the music they play has never been something I have been involved in, because I simply enjoy what I enjoy.
Saying that, this band has copped a lot of opposition to this album, and it isn’t hard to see why with the drastic change in style they have undertaken. Beginning with some guitar noodling and an exuberant shout from vocalist Eddie Hermida, lead single ‘Doris’ sounds like a standard Ross Robinson produced live album, by a deathcore band, and then comes the chorus, heavily influenced by the Deftones and a stream of late 90s – early 00s nu-metal bands.
And this is basically the album, a band testing both their own and in turn their fan base’s musical boundaries and that of the musical scene they have reigned over for so long.
It isn’t without its merits. Tracks like ‘Silence’ maintain the rage even through spoken passages and Marilyn Mansonesque vocals in the chorus. Or the complete Deftones worship track and absolute album stand out ‘Dying In A Red Room’. As well as acoustic song ‘Conformity’ with its great electric guitar solo and vacant drum sound showcasing a group that has long given up caring what anyone but those in the band have to say about their musical output.
But Suicide Silence also sounds like a rehearsal jam committed to tape. Check ‘Hold Me Up, Hold Me Down’ that starts out solid and heavy with a loose feel, but meanders on for a solid two and half minutes beyond its opening salvo of hardcore/death into guitar tones and hollow screams.
The production is dynamic and you can genuinely hear the previously mentioned ‘loose’ feel across the album, a trait commonly associated with Robinsons’ style, as well as the whole prominent nu-metal sound. If this album came out in 1999 it may have given Slipknot a run for their money in the ferociousness stakes, and would have been questioned less in terms of style. But with four albums of material nowhere near this diverse and far heavier, the shock it has delivered was always going to happen.
I personally appreciate what the band have attempted to achieve here, even if it feels a bit hit and miss at times due to the mish mash of style and production. If you were never a fan of the band before due to ‘scene’ jargon, I recommend you have a look at what they have tried to do here; it is worth your time.
4. Dying in a Red Room
5. Hold Me Up, Hold Me Down
7. The Zero
9. Don’t Be Careful You Might Hurt Yourself