Breakdown-overloaded metalcore has saturated the heavy-metal market in recent years, and new releases increasingly sound like mundane imitations of other records. To make something memorable in 2011, a band must go beyond the same sound everyone else is producing—or at least do it much better.
Illinois tech-deathcore sextet Born of Osiris tries to do both on their latest record, The Discovery, and end up pulling the mission off with considerable success. Their third full-length finds the band sharpening its virtuosic skills and adding more melody in guitar riffs and keyboard fills. The synthesis of technical breakdowns, eerie synth noises, shredding solos, and stuttering guitar riffs make for some really kickass music.
On “Follow the Signs,” a creepy keyboard melody is played over a pummeling breakdown, and the song ends with a haunting guitar solo vaguely reminiscent of Alex Skolnick’s work. Another standout is “Recreate,” which features transitions from Meshuggah-esque heaviness to fresh guitar harmonies. The album ends with “Behold,” a track that captures the musicians’ impressive technicality and displays their standout ability to reign it in enough to produce a catchy, as well as flashy, song.
Occasionally the band lapses into predictable deathcore formulas. The layered screaming sounds great sometimes but cheesy at other. The continuous breakdown structure of songs like “Two Worlds of Design” gets repetitive quickly. Nevertheless, The Discovery is an original record that places Born of Osiris as among the best in their style of metal. DAVID MCKENNA