All Shall Perish

This Is Where It Ends

01. Divine Illusion
02. There Is Nothing Left
03. Procession of Ashes
04. A Pure Evil
05. Embrace the Curse
06. Spineless
07. The Past Will Haunt Us Both
08. Royalty into Exile
09. My Retaliation
10. Rebirth
11. The Death Plague
12. In This Life Of Pain

[07/26/11]
[Nuclear Blast]

The genre of deathcore has a few gems worth raving about. Most of them are progressive in nature, but there are a couple that straight up bring the genre into a positive light without any qualms. Last year, I made a list of what I felt were the top five deathcore albums in existence, and All Shall Perish‘s opus Awaken the Dreamers took my number one spot. Much has changed in the past couple of years in the ASP camp though, what with a lineup change resulting in a new drummer and a lead guitarist. This could have spelled disaster and left many (myself included) to wonder whether or not they could pull off a decent follow-up, but somehow ASP managed to pull it together and put much of those fears to rest on This Is Where It Ends.

This Is Where It Ends has the usual All Shall Perish bells and whistles, so fans can rest assured that there hasn’t been some sort of massive regression. While ASP has in fact peaked with Awaken the Dreamers, This Is Where It Ends isn’t necessarily an unworthy follow-up. There’s certainly a different overall tone this time around; This Is Where It Ends feels more anthemic and triumphant than its bleaker predecessor. Despite the album’s defeated cover art, the album takes an ultimately much more optimistic tone, which should make the band’s live show this touring cycle quite involving with the crowd.

The more straightforward style of This Is Where It Ends may appease fans of The Price Of Existence-era All Shall Perish who were yearning for a return to form. The clean vocals that were used sparingly on Awaken the Dreamers have been greatly scaled back, limited to the rare backing vocals, as in the album’s highlight closer, “In This Life Of Pain.” Powerful choruses still exist, but gritty chant-worthy howls take the place of the clean singing. Eddie Hermida’s harsh vocals are as punishing as ever though, with throat-shredding shrieks and powerful lows in top form.

On a musical front, while Chris Storey is a tough act to follow, new guitarist Francesco Artusato fills in his shoes quite competently. While the overall technical shredding has been toned down a bit, solos and leads are still quite technical and catchy, complimenting Ben Orum’s consistent performance as a driving rhythm guitarist. The duo certainly bring the riffs in full force, and managing to avoid overusing banal breakdowns, unlike some of their contemporaries. The rhythm section is as driving as ever, as well.

At the end of the day, This Is Where It Ends scales back the All Shall Perish sound without losing their overall appeal. Not much new ground is explored, save for some newly utilized piano in “The Past Will Haunt Us Both” and “In This Life Of Pain,” which really breathes extra live into the tracks. Nevertheless, All Shall Perish are as catchy as they’ve ever been, and while—much to my chagrin—they’ve deviated from the progression made on Awaken the Dreamers, they’ve managed to craft a solid release that is actually a fun listen and keeps them near the forefront of the genre.

All Shall Perish – This Is Where It Ends gets…

3.5/5

– JR

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