Haste The Day – Attack of the Wolf King

By BMer on June-22-2010 | Filed under Reviews | Tags : , | Share

Haste The Day – Attack of the Wolf King
Score: 4/5Score: 4/5Score: 4/5Score: 4/5Score: 4/54
4.6 (32 votes)

Band: Haste The Day
Title: Attack of the Wolf King
Label: Solid State Records
Release Date: June 29, 2010
Reviewer: BMer


  1. “Wake Up the Sun”
  2. “Dog Like Vultures”
  3. “The Quiet, Deadly Ticking”
  4. “Travesty”
  5. “Merit for Sadness”
  6. “The Un-Manifest”
  7. “The Place Where Most Deny”
  8. “White As Snow”
  9. “Crush Resistance”
  10. “Walk With a Crooked Spine”
  11. “My Name Is Darkness”

Attack of the Wolf King is the fifth studio album from metalcore act Haste the Day, which will be released through Solid State Record on June 29, 2010.  This is the first album with the current lineup; the only mainstays from Dreamer are Stephen Keech and Mike Murphy (bass).  Added to the group are drummer Guiseppe Capolupo (ex-Once Nothing) and guitarist Dave Krysl (ex-New Day Awakening, Stephen’s old band) and Scotty Whelan (ex-Phinehas).  This will be HTD‘s fifth album on Solid State Records since Burning Bridges, their first release in 2004.

The last three records that have featured Stephen on vocals have been quite different from one another and with Attack of the Wolf King the change is for the better.  This record shows many accomplished elements of HTD, excellent guitar-work and solid song-writing.  New drummer Giuseppe is awesome, and while Devin was a very good drummer for HTD, Giuseppe’s introduction will give the band a fresh feel for years to come.  Just when some of us thought HTD might be on its last legs the new members bring another level of ability.

According to front man Stephen Keech “The record is a concept album about a herd of sheep being protected by lions from a pack of bloodthirsty wolves.”  Concept albums are always tough, sometimes the concept takes away from the music and starts to get somewhat gimmicky and sometimes the concept is completely lost on the listener.  In the case of Attack of the Wolf King the concept of sheep being protected by lions is something that we can relate to, it can be perceived as a metaphor to Christians living in the world today.  The songs turn into battle-cries, and when we sing along we are singing with purpose.

While the guitar-work is the most noticeable improvement, the lyrics and attention to song writing is equally as impressive.  Stephen really shows a foundation of biblical knowledge on both Dreamer and Attack of the Wolf King, his lyrics are carefully written and once you get a chance to read them along with the record they will make an impact.  Some bands use the vocals merely as another instrument in the metalcore genre, and their lyrics lack a sense of purpose and value.  Haste the Day is a band that along with a crunching, pit-stomping sound, have brought an inspirational message of Christ’s power and love. Whether they’re chanting “Won’t look back – chains that bound me” or “ For Now – we are here and we are one” Haste the Day really understand how to rally the listener.

My favorite track on the album so far is “Dogs Like Vultures”, a track that blends the harsh aggressive metal sounds of HTD with a beautiful melodic chorus.  There is just something great about a heavy crunching sound featuring a chorus with words like “our hearts are softer than the sheep.”  On the track “The Quiet, Deadly Ticking” you have some more impressive guitar-noodling on top of some serious chugging that will most likely incite some intense ground-punching!

“Travesty”, the first track released for streaming, also features some heartfelt lyrics “With love that the blindest eyes will see, You cover the darkest part of me.”  When I first heard this track I was a little concerned that the new record wouldn’t be heavy enough but tracks like “The Quiet, Deadly Ticking” and “The Un-manifest” feature that old-school feel from Haste The Day, straight-forward, raw pounding metalcore.  Track 10, “Walk With A Crooked Spine” has some excellent contrasts throughout the song, with a closing breakdown that is one of the best on the album.  Micah Kinard, singer for another Solid State backed metalcore band Oh, Sleeper does some guest vocals on the throwdown track “The Place Where Most Deny”.

As I said earlier, the guitar-work is a major improvement from the previous two records.  Very tight melodic parts feature throughout each song, giving the verses a lot of dynamic.  Haste the Day sticks to the metalcore blueprint, adding breakdowns to most songs, clean catchy choruses, and aggressive intense verses.  It’s not ground-breaking, however the quality of Haste The Day shows on this record.  They have combined the good elements from Pressure the Hinges and Dreamer to create an album that is excellent from start to finish.

OVERALL for fans of metalcore this album will be a favorite this year, if you don’t like metalcore (or think it’s a dying genre) then this won’t bring anything new to the table.  You won’t find Jimmy Ryan here so we can all stop wishing every album would sound like Burning Bridges, it’s time to move on.  Attack of the Wolf King combines the passionate energy of early Haste the Day albums with fresh new talent to give us one of the best releases of the year.

Haste The Day - Attack of the Wolf King, 4.6 out of 5 based on 32 ratings

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About the author BMer

Grew up in Sacramento in the punk scene, moved to Denver and have been there ever since. Punk / Hardcore. View all posts by BMer

50 Responses to 'Haste The Day – Attack of the Wolf King'

  1. Caleb says:

    I realy want to hear the track with Micah from Oh, Sleeper.

  2. Jacob1016 says:

    Excellent review. I totally agree with everything. :) HTD ROCKS!!!

  3. Matt R says:

    such an amazing album.

  4. Good review man. Loved the part when you told the people pining for Jimmy to move on. That is something that is sadly so true. Some fans have written them off for no reason other than Jimmy left.

  5. Brandon says:

    If Further Seems Forever can go through 3 vocalists and still put out 3 solid records, then I suppose bands like Haste the Day can do the same :)

  6. Mikey says:

    I’m looking forward to this release. I wasn’t into Dreamer as much as I was into Pressure The Hinges so hearing it blends both albums sounds promising

  7. Tim says:

    I don’t pine for Jimmy. He’s a good vocalist, as is Keech. I just haven’t enjoyed any of their albums since the debut EP and Burning Bridges.

    Nice review anyway.

  8. Steve says:

    Excellent review. This makes me want to give them another shot after Dreamer

  9. Justin says:

    The whole album is steaming on the band’s myspace…i listened to it and liked it a lot

  10. Evan says:

    Hey Dreamer was good!!!

    But no seriously, this is a bold thing I am gonna say, but this is BY FAR the best HTD record yet!

    WHY? Because it meshes together every album and puts a completly new spin on them. You can hear references from every album they have done, but all the while sounding completly new and fresh.

    Haste the Day has been reborn, and oh it is a perfect birth!!!

  11. Nater says:

    i love the cover… it looks like something made in MS paint, but it’s still gnarly.

  12. I love this album. Dreamer was such a let down, I don’t how they did it, hinges was so good. But this new one is very impressive. On 2nd listen right now.

  13. HAYNGMAN#3000 says:

    i love this album.

  14. Headless says:

    You know, after the cover art hit, I thought they were reaching their all time low. Not a record good throughout since Burning Bridges, not even an interesting sound since Pressure the Hinges. But the clips of this sound awesome. I disagree; I think they’re breaking the stale metalcore blueprint they’ve always followed. The riffs sound more like Life In Your Way than Still Remains. The choruses aren’t recycled hooks anymore. This could be great.

  15. dan says:

    idk how everyone hates on dreamer when it was just a heavier Pressure the hinges.. but this is deffinitly my favorite HTD album.

    • BMer says:

      personally i didn’t hate Dreamer, it just took me a while to really get into it. i think the issue for me was that it didn’t flow as well as Pressure the Hinges or older stuff. it was a too technical, like how 68 is actually in 6/8 and stuff like that. it was just a little different, but it’s a good record, i enjoy it.

  16. Anthony Takach says:

    I liked dreamer. Madman, haunting, sons of the fallen nation, and an adult tree were all really good songs imo. I haven’t listened to all the new one but the songs “wake up the sun”, “dog like vultures”, and “merit for sadness” are awesome, I love the choruses!

  17. I’m that guy who thinks haste the day has been downhill since the jimmy ryan days. BUT its not because i liked jimmy ryans screaming/shouting so much, its just stephens singing (not screaming) that ruins songs FOR ME. I actually prefer stephens screaming/growling, but its that type of singing makes me want to hurl. Its the same reason that I’ve hard a harder time getting into the last AILD record as well.

    • Brian W says:

      Dude, I’m completely with you. I thought I was the only one. That type of singing/screaming combo is in so many bands right now. It sucks imo.

  18. WarriorSam says:

    Dreamer was okey… I really didn’t like Pressure the Hinges.. This one is good but not really special… but the cover art is really ugly…

  19. I feel the same way about those high, faux pop-punk, emo vocals. I really liked Brennans clean vocals, they has some power to them, well compared to the nasally stuff. Will miss those. I do disagree about the music being better with Jimmy. The music is much more progressive than with the earlier stuff, but I will say this there is a fire and catchiness about the early records that the last two have missed. I suppose if you like straight ahead, catchy, pit crazy songs Jimmy era is for you. If you like more progressive, songs that you need to chew on Stephen era is for you. I will say this every HTD album is well above par, it’s just a personal preference thing I suppose. As for me, thankfully I enjoy all of their stuff and from what I’ve heard thus far AOTWK doesn’t change my opinion in the least.

  20. Nrizzle says:

    Personally: Attack of the Wolf King > Dreamer > Burning Bridges > Pressure the Hinges > That They May Know You > When Everything Falls.

    While I can understand that people don’t like Stephen’s clean vocals (he used to be a vocalist for a pop-punk band, so that’s where that comes from) they have so much emotion in them that I find it hard not to like them.

    Also, am I the only one that hears old Hopesfall shine through in those guitars (Chords/chugging riffs + melody and variation)?

    • dacheat says:

      Really? To each their own I guess, but IMO:
      Pressure the Hinges > Dreamer > When Everything Falls > Burning Bridges > That They May Know You.

      Can’t rate Wolf King since I don’t have it yet. :(

  21. Brody says:

    I’m really liking this cd. I had zero expectations for it when it was first announced. I enjoyed Dreamer quite a bit, but I was just afraid the band would stick with that same sound on the new cd. After hearing it, it really blows my mind though! The complexity and all the different layers are really nice. I find something new in each song every time I listen!

  22. Anthony Takach says:

    My favs

    1. Pressure the hinges
    2. When everything falls
    3. Attack of the wolf king
    4. Dreamer
    5. Burning bridges (though the song american love is awesome)

    • dacheat says:

      Yeah American Love is amazing. Unfortunately an album is made up of more than one song. I just love how their last three albums have all been amazing, but so different as well. I think with this next album it will be four amazing albums in a row. At least it will be from what I’ve listened to so far.

    • Loren Wade says:

      Burning Bridges will always be number one for me. It is incredible.

      1) Burning Bridges
      2) Attack of the Wolf King
      3) When Everything Falls
      4) Dreamer
      5) Pressure the Hinges

      I love them all… but this is my favorites in order.

  23. Chase says:

    I could never get into their earlier records. Jimmy’s vocals just really grated on me… Also a lot of their material sounded kind of similar. Even Pressure the Hinges didn’t really catch my attention, except for a couple songs. However Dreamer was an amazing album. Diverse and original with amazing lyrics and depth. I absolutely loved it. And this album is even better! Good job guys.

  24. dacheat says:

    Argh… Gotta wait two more days… :(

  25. Bruce Collins says:

    This new stuff has taken me by surprise! Didn’t like it at first listen but have since really taken a liking to it… Burning Bridges is still my favourite though, followed by PtH… maybe this one will still find a near favourite HTD spot in my playlist

  26. Anthony Takach says:

    Oh I like some of the other old HTD songs too. Substance, song of faith, walls and fear, for a life time, long way down, autumn, who we are etc.

  27. Anthony Takach says:

    I made a short review and I can post it if you guys want? Any way aotwk IS a good record but its not their best. Pressure the hinges had “chorus of angels”, “the minor prophets”, “white collar”, “stitches”, and of course the title track was good too. Dreamer had a certain atmosphere that attack is kind of lacking. Songs like “madman”, “haunting”, “resolve”, “an adult tree”, and “sons of the fallen nation” was SICK! This new one has its solid tracks though. Songs like “dog like vultures”, “merit for sadness”, “travesty”, and the deftones influenced “white as snow” are all on repeat for me. BUT, theres just a certain “fire” that isn’t as strong as the last album. Maybe it’ll grow on me. The harder songs like “crush resistance”, and “the un manifest” are good but they don’t stick with me. ABR does it better, but still htd can metal it out and sound decent, just not amazing. My opinions ofcourse. God bless!

  28. AOTWK is amazing. It has a similar sound to Oh Sleeper’s last album. All of their other albums took time to grow on me, but this… This is so catchy, and the new guitar player and drummer bring a refreshing new sound to HTD. I love this, I just hope, as I am with Oh Sleeper, still playing AOTWK heavily a year later. Honestly I think I will. From first impression I think this is their best album.

  29. WarriorSam says:

    To me its like
    1) Burning Bridges
    2) When Everything Falls
    3) Dreamer
    4) Attack of the Wolf King
    5) Pressure the Hinges

  30. Ryan says:

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say it will be a favorite of metalcore this. I would put AILD’s The Powerless Rise there. But this, unexpectedly, could be number two favorite.

  31. I just picked this up today. Disappointed in the flimsy packaging and lyric book without the cover but the album was better than I was expecting. I was a big fan of Dreamer and it’s group of songs with great variety. It was a step up from PtH, which you can tell they were just feeling each other out and hadn’t worked up a solid chemistry yet. The old Haste the Day with Jimmy was hit and miss. His screaming/wretching was the same on every song but some of their best riffs and singing came from BB. WEF was horribly boring and mediocre. My list goes like this:

    1. Dreamer
    2. Burning Bridges
    3. Attack of the Wolf King (need way more spins before I settle on a place)
    4. Pressure the Hinges
    99. When Everything Falls

    On a side note, the song with Micah is amazing (being the Oh, Sleeper fanboy I am) and I do hear some similarities to Oh Sleeper throughout the album.

  32. BMer says:

    i think it’s really interesting how Pressure the Hinges is either people’s favorite album, or least favorite. i really enjoyed PtH but i can understand when people say it was too predictable and not very dynamic, compared to Dreamer or AOTWK. i like simple stuff though, heavy with breakdowns, i’m a sucker for that ( i loved Means – Sending You Strength).

    just interesting

  33. Brandon says:

    I listened to the 30 second samples of this on Itunes last night and I really like what I hear. I think I am going to buy this. I feel bad for not listening to it before now. I skipped the stream on Myspace and the stream the nail sent me. This seems like an album i’d like.

  34. Jake says:

    I love this album. I’d call it a perfect album, which there are not a lot of. Up there with the new TDWP and Oh, Sleeper. I couldn’t (and still can’t) get into their stuff before Stephen. There were few songs on those I liked. Pressure the Hinges was amazing and one of my favorites. Dreamer was great. I didn’t think it cound be topped. 68 had one of the sickest breakdowns ever and will always be my favorite song period. That was until this album. The Place Where Most Deny was kinda like Nuclear+ by MCMB in that it’s my favorite song on the record but may not be so radio-friendly. Great album though.

    P.S. The extra unreleased video is DEFINATLY worth the extra money. It’s hilarious

    • dacheat says:

      Is any of this album radio friendly? What radio stations do you listen to, because nothing around me would even dream of playing HTD. (Or any kind of hardcore/metalcore/whateveryouwannacallitcore)

  35. This is the first HTD album that I can’t get enough of. It is amazing. For me it is like this: AOTWK 9.5/10, Dreamer 8/10, Burning Bridges 7.5/10, PTH 7/10, WEF 6.5/10.

  36. matt_b86 says:

    I’ve enjoyed each Haste the Day release, although I’d have to say I’m a bigger fan of Keech’s vocals. My order would be:
    1) Pressure the Hinges
    2) Attack of the Wolf King
    3) Dreamer
    4) When Everything Falls
    5) Burning Bridges

  37. dacheat says:

    The whole album is amazing, but the highlight of the album is definitely Micah on “The Place that Most Deny”.

  38. dacheat says:

    Oh, and the special edition cover art is 1285 times cooler.

  39. Ben says:

    It’s “Dog Like Vultures” but should really be “Dog-like Vultures”

    This album is great. Almost every song is unforgettable. Except one or two that I’ve forgotten…

    The special edition has some cool bonus tracks… the cover song is fantastic!!! Cracks me up each time, but so well done.

  40. Brandon says:

    WOW, all I can say is WOW. I gave in to peer pressure and bought this off ITunes last night. I’m listening now. I love the progression on this release. The screaming vocals are also done so well, so much better than their earlier material.

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