It’s hard not to compare Lancaster, Pennsylvania-based metalcore quintet Texas in July with fellow Lancaster quintet August Burns Red: In fact, One Reality often sounds like an imitation of ABR, or any other like-minded metalcore act, for that matter. Lengthy breakdowns, noodly riffs, and a mix of spoken and roared vocals fail to break from the subgenre’s mold, but Texas in July do manage to pummel out some catchy tunes that ABR fans should enjoy on this, their second full-length album, which is certainly more mature and more technically challenging than their debut.
It's hard not to cut the band some slack considering how young the members are, ranging in age from just 18 to 21. As such, tracks like “Dying World” and “1000 Lies” are definitely impressive and capture the bandmates at their best, playing virtuosic sections that would stump players with years of experience over them. Most tracks, though, sound more like “Our Freedom,” which mixes the aforementioned unoriginal chugga-chugga mosh parts with uninspired lyrics and lackluster riffs, and proves emblematic of the band’s unfortunate reliance on subgenre clichés. While One Reality may mark a step forward for Texas in July, displaying some brief moments of heavy brilliance, the album simply doesn’t stand out from the myriad of other metalcore albums being released every week. DAVID McKENNA
Check out our tour gallery from Texas in July here.