You know how people say you should always show up to parties with someone uglier than you, so as to appear more attractive yourself? Well, Like Moths To Flames‘ latest effort An Eye For An Eye is that ugly person you’d want to bring to a party. This record makes bands like Issues and Woe, Is Me look somewhat attractive. If you’re looking for something new or refreshing, turn away now and never look back. There is absolutely nothing here for you.
I read a YouTube comment from one of the new lyric videos that said, “Why is Chris [Roetter] always so mad?” After listening to this album, most people will probably be asking the same thing. Nearly every song is about condemning someone, intolerance towards someone, or just senseless and pointless hatred. I have no problem with some angry lyrics here and there, but it seems to be the only thing Roetter can write about. And to make matters worse, he is completely unable to do this in a creative way. Here are some examples: “You’re f*cking guilty scum,” “What I really need is for you to go f*ck yourself,” “F*ck this life,” and “You are everything I despise/Your life is such a f*cking lie” (from the songs “You’ll Burn,” “I Solemnly Swear,” “Deathmarks,” and “The Blackout,” respectively).
Unfortunately, the lyrics are not the only thing lacking innovation in An Eye For An Eye. Practically every song relies on that dissonant “1-0” guitar chord for every breakdown. You know, that same chord that most bands have been using for the past six years to create the illusion of ‘heaviness.’ This flaw causes all of the songs to mesh together to form one giant breakdown. Those poor guitarists must be bored out of their minds.
Though the production is fairly exceptional, the lead guitar and bass guitar tones are disappointingly dull. In fact, you wouldn’t have even known there was bass at all on this record if it weren’t for a boring bass feature in the beginning of “In Dreams.” This song is the band’s first attempt at writing a track with solely clean vocals. Sadly, it is just as boring as the heavy ones.
The only song on this album that managed to grab my attention was “Into the Ground.” The intro instantly reminded me of something that melodic hardcore outfit Counterparts might write. But after a verse featuring some fast and aggressive drumming, the song reverts back to more generic bottom-string riffing. Everything after this song just gets worse, with chugging and predictable breakdowns becoming even more abundant.
Despite Roetter’s impressive ability to sing and scream well, his melodies this time around are mind-numbing and his screams are typically one-dimensional. All of the vocals in this record feel very rushed – almost as if the band only had three or four days the write all of the vocal parts. And for whatever reason, Roetter blatantly hits a wrong note in the sappy chorus of “I Solemnly Swear.” How on earth did that even get by the producer?
This album a prime example of what is wrong with this genre; nobody strives for originality at all anymore. I honestly feel like I have heard this album a billion times before, but with twice as many forced breakdowns. If, by chance, anyone from the band is reading this, please take my suggestion into great consideration: do something NEW. Throw in a curve ball and at least try to make my jaw drop once in a while. An Eye For An Eye might be one of the most forgettable albums this year.