I spent the whole week listening to Chelsea Grin‘s latest album, Ashes to Ashes, which was a challenge -to be honest- to give an honest review, so here we go!
Let’s start first with a quick band info. If you don’t know Chelsea Grin, they are an American band from Salt Lake City, Utah and their genre is Deathcore. Their first Self-Titled EP was released on July 27th 2008 and waiting for their upcoming album Ashes to Ashes to be released on July 8th this year. The band describe their new album as:
“This album has the same amount of material and Desolation of Eden, My Damnation and Evolve… COMBINED.”
Frontman, Alex Koehler, states that the lyrical content on Ashes to Ashes is much more positive than on the other records:
“It’s more about standing up for yourselves and not giving a f*** about anyone else’s opinions. Every song is going to be based on real life: alcoholism, drug abuse, violence and everyday bulls*** forced down our throats”.
Let’s see if their own comments about the album checks out, technical talk here about the music, their evolution from their earlier work to the newly anticipated album is noted since they do actually play differently and add more elements such as Djent, and actually I noticed that one of the tracks had some Black Metal in it, a whole lot of Time signature techniques from the drum lines, guitar playing and the Melodic portion that they mentioned in their comments that is also noticed in their tracks but not all of them. I would say the melodic side started off from track #7 till the end of the album, and what was before that was a harsher approach technique of playing. Vocals were between brutal and sneaking vocaling styles that were harmonized throughout the album along with some clean vocals that was in most of the choruses and not all of the tracks. Sad to say this, even though they are talented musicians and wanted to “show off” their technical muscles in this album, they kinda O.D’ed on whatever type of steroid they were popping to make those muscles ripped. In other words, they were not so lucky with most of their tracks with the mash up of techniques and they somehow “overdid” it.
Lyrical content of the album, as the band’s frontman, Alex Koehler, described -in simple words– standing against the world, being original, unique and dealing with a number of real life topics like abuse, alcoholism and others. And this is what Metal music is all about, discussing harsh and difficult topics that relates to life events in a magnificent array of vocabulary and utter poetry that makes you connect and appreciate the lyrical content of an album, but it wasn’t the case in this album since the way the lyrics are written is totally average and somewhat childish, and I’ll keep it at that.
In conclusion, they are a talented band that has enough room to grow even more with what they want to deliver and how to deliver it. So if you are a helpless teenager that needs to listen to something so angry to vent out your anger and frustration, then this album is a “must listen”, but if you are not then I suggest that you give it a pass.
Here is one of their tracks ‘Clockwork’ from their awaited album, Ashes to Ashes: