In an overpopulated sea of metalcore, any band looking to make even a moderate ripple needs to differentiate somehow. From the Northeast scene arrives Life In Your Way and their vie for your loud and heavy music appetite. With Waking Giants, LIYW moves from Floodgate Records to the staple hardcore/metal label for believers in bands- Solid State- and attempts to put their best foot forward as they move into greater depths, and a potentially wider audience. Do they make a splash?
Sort of. Joshua Kellam's screaming has less huskiness than some, and a slight shimmery rasp that I found myself having to forcibly get used to, even if he sounds reminiscent of early Hopesfall. The instrumentation is good, and the quality of the record overall is a big jump in comparison to 2005's Ignite and Rebuild. Structurally, LIYW attempts a degree of variety in songwriting, using occasional 'clean' vocal harmonies as well as Shai Hulud-esque spoken-word breaks. "Salty Grave" has just such a spoken-word moment, followed promptly with an echo of voices chanting part of the classic praise song "I Love You, Lord." There isn't much lyrical ambiguity, thankfully, as most of the songs are pretty straightforward in directing both lament and praise to Whom we should. In "The Beauty of Grace," the band spends a few minutes exploring what they might sound like without the screaming, with the instrumental interlude providing a nice reprieve.
Life In Your Way doesn't sonically stray far from the norm, but rather seems driven to perfect an existing foundation. The tastefully inserted experimental elements are obvious- but time will tell if they're enough to stir the waters. With minor twists on an established genre and a few radiant crescendos - if your metal/hardcore palette has yet to be satiated, this album will be a welcomed addition.- Review date: 4/17/07, written by David Goodman
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