Saving Grace - The King Is Coming

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Artist:  Saving Grace
Title:  The King Is Coming
Label:  Facedown Records
Release Date:  11/22/2011
Reviewer:  Jeremiah Holdsworth

Tracklisting:

1.  The King Is Coming
2.  Shekinah
3.  The First Woe
4.  Cross Contamination
5.  Deathless
6.  Man Of Sorrows (The Funeral Dirge)
7.  The Eye Of The Storm Part III
8.  Habakkuk
9.  Kefirah
10.  Beware The Apostates
11.  Revelation 6
12.  With Lifted Eyes

I love music with a passion.  The way you can express yourself through the art of sound, is something that I’ve been amazed with, since I was a young boy.  Music can tug and pull at your emotions in ways that nothing else can.  Bach and Mozart, as well as the many other classical composers, became famous based on how their music engulfed the listener.  It allowed them to form their own experience, that showed unlimited bounds, captivating the imagination.  Today we have so many different styles of music, so there is at least one that a person likes.  I listen to all sorts of genres but I’m still waiting on that Black Metal/Polka/Hip-Hop release.

I’ve grown to be a pretty big fan of metalcore over the last several years.  As I was introduced to August Burns Red, As I Lay Dying, War Of Ages, etc…, I was amazed at the impressive musicianship that was displayed by those bands.  Lately I’ve grown tired of the genre, as not much has changed, and it has just gotten kinda boring.  I need metalcore to hook me and reel me back in.  I don’t want to have to fight it, I want to be reeled back in.

Saving Grace came my way and I was excited to be able to review their 3rd full-length “The King Is Coming”.  They hail from New Zealand featuring Nicholas Tautuhi on vocals, Vasely Spunov and George White on guitars, Mike Benson on bass, and Shaun Anderson on drums.  Spirit-filled metalcore filled with the good news, makes up the bands emphasis.  I thought their first two albums were great so I was hoping this would reaffirm my trust is great metalcore music.

“The King Is Coming” showcases people screaming in agony before plummeting into a breakdown with lyrics based on Romans 8:22.  What a way to start off an album!

“Shekinah” comes out the gate with fierce drumming and guitar playing.  The song leads you to believe it’s almost finished and then it keeps going for awhile longer.  The few change ups keeps it interesting and fresh.  Here’s some lyrics

Burn away the darkness of sin, fill these hands with seeds of truth.  Show the path and I will follow, let your Spirit lead me through

“The First Woe” is a straightforward blistering 2 minutes of melting your face with lyrics based on Revelation 9:1-12.

“Cross Contamination” keeps up the speed with brutal hardcore drumming and breakdowns.  More bold and honest lyrics

And through the bloodiest trials, new character is forged.  Though the war is won, the battle rages on.  His kingdom will be preached and so will His testimony.  The Gospel lives.

“Deathless” comes next and this song is far from that.  This song is one of the best of this genre that I’ve ever heard.  The fast and slow drumming, blastbeats, sweet harmonized guitar riffs through out, a spoken word part, and a 30 second plus epic guitar solo finished by a brutal breakdown proclaiming,

King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Eyes of fire… Deathless Conqueror.
King of Kings and Lord of Lords, with justice waging war He’s the Deathless Conqueror.
King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Faithful and True… Deathless Conqueror.
King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Word of God… Deathless Conqueror. King of Kings!

“Man Of Sorrows – The Funeral Dirge” is a slow song that kinda feels out of place on the album.  It’s not bad but it just feels weird and acts as an interlude to the uninspiring instrumental interlude of “The Eye Of The Storm Part III”.  I love instrumentals but I want something that’s going to stir my emotions and this doesn’t do it.

“Habakkuk” brings the brutal spirit-filled metalcore back on full display.  More great guitar riffs, blastbeats, and double bass kick pedals.  I love the lyrics throughout, especially these in the second half of the song

Heed his warning. Take heart for through
intercession, worry transforms to worship, fear turns to faith, terror becomes trust. Doubts resolved with hope and anguish melts into adoration.
Then the heart can rest in the surety that Christ is King, and patiently await His return.Come Lord Jesus! Emanuel!
Bring Your Glory! Bring Your Justice!

“Kefirah” has a very bold message as the band is calling out Universalism.  The lyrics really got to my spirit so I’ve listed them all below,

Hung from a tree, the face of all truth and compassion, broken and nailed. Bloodshed and death, the price that was paid, but your eyes are still veiled.
How can the truth of His words be so tarnished by lies? You were the target of snakes; now they cover your eyes.
This is a warning to all… “I never knew you” is not a metaphor. You want your perfect life; There must be compromise.
“You will know them by their fruits” well, this tree is fruitless, barren, rotted away. There is a place created for demons; there is a Hell believe Him He’s seen it.
There is a purpose for warnings of old; there is a war waging on for your soul.  “I never knew you” is not a metaphor.
The way, The Truth, The Life, He was the compromise. “There are many rooms” but your house is crumbling, falling, burning away.
See through the lies, beyond the black, blinded victim of unholy attack. No other name will snatch you from the fire, if there is another then Christ is a liar.
He is the gate; He paid the cost. The key to the Heavens was hung on a cross. He is the one mighty to save, conquering death as He walked from His grave.
Blood… Royal Blood… most precious blood, but you still want more…
King… Father God… most Holy Christ, truly I tell you He is coming back for His bride not a whore.
Universalism is a Lie!  Whilst there is breath in your lungs, pray for cleansing…

“Beware The Apostates” and “Revelation 6” are great songs that help wind down this album.  Pretty straight forward musically with more christian-themed lyrics.

“With Lifted Eyes” acts as the outro and has the same feel as “Man Of Sorrows”.  It’s slow and just doesn’t feel right with the mostly fast paced nature of the album.

Overall:  Saving Grace’s third album, “The King Is Coming”, filled my ears full of bleeding eardrums.  Songs range from amazing, to great, with a couple that fall short, including a boring instrumental.  I love the lyrics these gentlemen put to the songs as I prefer bold christian messages with the gospel intertwined.  Great music and messages equals a great album!

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