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All That Remains: A War You Cannot Win

Metalcore veterans aim for the pop market

Massachusetts metalcore troupe All That Remains released their new album on election day, no doubt with the vainglorious assumption that it could stand up to the pandemonium caused by Romney vs Obama.

As it happens A War… is that insipid that it probably struggled to raise an eyebrow in the label office, let alone the rest of the country. Through their career All That Remains have tussled with the desire to be brutal with the attraction of creating glossy, melodic tunes. In The Fall Of Ideals they nailed it, blending tight riffage and memorable hooks, but elsewhere their rock-solid formula loses shape to the point where their sixth studio record lacks any real sense of cohesion.

There are some highlights; You Can’t Fill My Shadow, is both tight and atmospheric, Stand Up’s air-punching power. Choppy riffs occasionally bolster the momentum but the album is mostly chaff that borders on teen fan fodder. The Jonas Brothers are capable of writing songs like Asking Too Much and What If I Was Nothing sounds like Nickleback.

This is essentially overhyped, overproduced ’core for the masses with Fisher-Price blastbeats and lame-ass lyrics about love. Approach with caution.