Emmure Strikes Out At The All Stars Tour, Born of Osiris Hits A Home Run
Band Photo: blessthefall (?)
I sadly arrived late for the show and missed all, but seven of the bands playing. Granted, I've never listened to the openers, since the majority of the bands were hardcore; a scene that I'm familiar with, but not a part of. This lead to an incredibly awkward experience, since I was immersing myself in a completely different culture.
After finishing up an upcoming interview with In This Moment, I entered the Congress Theater to watch Iwrestledabearonce. Having been chafed by Krysta Cameron's rabid parakeet screams when I saw the band play with The Dillinger Escape Plan, I was hoping that she may have improved as a vocalist during the past year on tour. Sadly, she's just as annoying as ever in a live setting, while the actual music remains unfocused, disjointed, and truly unfunny. Comedy metal can indeed work and Iwrestledabearonce should quit it with the funny sound effects and instead move on to having the humor come from their lyrics and stage presence. GWAR and Cannabis Corpse manage to be genuinely funny in an over-the-top way without annoying me because they don't bombard me with cheesy sound effects every ten seconds. It's a shame that Iwrestledabearonce still don’t comprehend taste and only make music for their own amusement instead of that of their highly annoyed audience.
In This Moment were up next and I have to say that ITM put on a great show. Maria's voice simply works better in a live setting than it does in the studio and it's a shame that they went from headlining to only playing five songs after only a few short months. Much like my experience with Warbringer and Job For a Cowboy, In This Moment won me over in the live arena. The fact that they put on such a great performance was sadly probably wasted on playing for a hardcore crowd who didn't appreciate their music, since much of the audience had left the venue during their set.
Next up was For Today, who I'd never listened to before, but managed to put on a good show despite being pretty generic modern hardcore. While the band doesn’t break any new ground or do much to stand out, they don't annoy me as much as most contemporary hardcore does. If I were more into the neo post-hardcore scene, I'd probably give the band a few more listens. Still, they're good for what they are and anyone into contemporary hardcore should give them a shot.
Next up was Blessthefall, who I caught back with As I Lay Dying last year, but are now more in their element. Despite not being into the whole whiny emo singing in today's post-hardcore, Blessthefall are good for what it is. It's just not a band for me so I can't say that I paid much attention to their set.
Born of Osiris was next, and having heard some great things about the act, I was happy to attend the show to see the band play. Not that I wasn't apprehensive, since I still hate most deathcore with a passion and I've grown to loath otherwise hyped deathcore bands that fail to live up to the buzz, like Between the Buried and Me and All Shall Perish. Yet, I decided to be a sucker, since I still like The Red Chord. So I was still willing to give BOO a chance. If for no other reason than the fact that they're a local band, and I was right to do so.
Born of Osiris manage to make chugging sound fresh again, mostly by having an excellent guitar tone, constant tempo changes and layering leads over their chugging. The band has created a unique sound for that shows what deathcore is capable of as a genre. It's just a shame that few bands really push deathcore to its limits and instead think inside the box.
Most importantly, they sound great live with a tight, rich sound to their music which provided a great contrast to all the hardcore. Purists may hate the band on principle due to the band's genre but Born of Osiris truly slay live and were the highlight of the night. And of course a good portion of the audience left shortly after BOO's set since the last two bands were sadly underwhelming.
Alesaena was yet another whiny hardcore band and having to listen to that same form of “singing” was enough for me. Blessthefall avoided being annoying by doing it right but Alesaena was way too aggravating for me to pay much attention to.
Finally, Emmure was headlining. I'll give credit where it's due and admit that Emmure does sound better live but then again it's hard to mess up the sound of downtuned guitar chugging. Therefore, it's safe to say that the band's sound tech is the most talented member of the group. Emmure remain a generic, unimaginative deathcore band who specialize in plagiarism of pop culture for both merchandise and lyrical topics... and that's when Frankie Palmeri isn't growling lyrics about beating people up. After seeing Born of Osiris do deathcore the right way, hearing Emmure sound like a thousand other horrible bands was incredibly anticlimactic.
While the occasional black metal screams and hip-hop influences do change things up a bit, they're really just gimmicks to cover up the fact that the band has a drummer who can only play at mid-tempo and guitarists who just chug. The only two songs that they even played that provided any sort of variety were just “Solar Flare Homicide” and “Chicago's Finest.” Then again, those are the only two songs in their discography that deviate from the band's formula at all. Until the band work on improving their speed and songwriting they'll forever be condemned to be forgotten once they're no longer hip.
So after seeing Born of Osiris and In This Moment completely slay, I sadly ended up feeling violated by watching two abysmally horrible bands follow them. I don't seem to understand Emmure's popularity at all aside from their constant pop culture references that don't even seem to make statements about commercialization of culture and just seem like references. They're just there on the surface like a Seltzer and Friedberg movie. Also, selling booty shorts that read “SLUT” on them? That sets a new low and if anything ensures that wives and girlfriends will continue to hate metal. That level of misogyny makes the entire genre seem stupid and makes me embarrassed to call myself a metalhead. Then again Emmure seem like the kind of band who specialize in brainlessness so I can’t criticize the mentally handicapped that much.
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