Release Date: September 18, 2015
One time alt metal titans turned unwitting mallcore heroes, Atreyu, return with their first new album since 2009. As most Atreyu fans gravitate more towards their early work, it would have been easy for the band to rewrite The Curse and cash in on their former scene-sters. They avoid doing that with style though on Long Live.
The album opens with the furious and pissy title track. It’s chocked full of positive vibes and great breakdowns, fully embracing both vocalists right from the get go. It’s a helluva way to start an album and while the metalcore breakdowns may be paint by numbers, let’s not forget that Atreyu helped put the numbers on the page.
“I Would Kill, Lie, Die (For You)” marches forward with machine gun guitar stutters and screaming vocals that lead to soaring beauty and the beast style choruses. Atreyu also remind us here that they are some of the best lyricists around, leaning more towards emo bands lyrically than their metalcore brethren. The more atmospheric sounding “Moments Before Dawn” is another highlight. It’s darker tone and narrative style lyrical delivery separate it from the pack relatively easily, but it still packs the same punch as any of the album’s other tunes.
For me, it’s the new single “Do You Know Who You Are?” that really gets my blood pumpin’. Is it modeled after Queen’s “We Will Rock You?” Probably. The screaming rap rock vocal that leads into the clean chorus and the brilliant use of musical space make it so damn catchy that you won’t be able to shake it. Lyrically, it stays pretty straightforward which helps it as well as far as I’m concerned. The band do a GREAT job of just writing a strong melody here. It truly showcases something new.
What I like most about this album is that it’s certainly Atreyu but it doesn’t sound exactly the same as it did before. There are a lot of new elements at play here and, honestly, they are the moments I enjoy the most. Aside from the occasional straight up metalcore tune, this album takes many chances and, in my book, almost all of them pay off. Long live Atreyu!
Reviewed by: Mark 1340