Artist: August Burns Red
Album: Thrill Seeker
Label: Solid State Records
Lancaster, PA is just half an hour away for me, so when I heard this local band had been drafted to the Tooth & Nail Empire, I was pretty surprised. But why not? Lancaster (pronounced locally as lank-ister, NOT lan-kaster as most others seem to say) has had a decent music scene for years, but until now hasn’t really gotten the attention of national record companies. The question remaining is whether or not August Burns Red does a good job of representing the 717 scene.
Hardcore in general has been leaving me unsatisfied these days. There are a few standout bands, but there is a grand lack of originality and creativity. A point is reached from time to time when every band sounds the same and hey, this CD is a nice listen once in a while but there’s nothing special about it. No matter how much passion the musicians may or may not have, the music is just played out and overdone. This is where August Burns Red comes into play. They continue the scene’s monotony and add very little to marvel at.
Thrill Seeker is not entirely a waste of time, though. There are a few occasions of gang vocals, one of my favorite things about hardcore. Closing with an instrumental that flows right into an 8 minute epic (one of the best tracks on the album) is pretty rock, and there are also some cool lyrics such as, “Everyone is full of it/ in their own way.”
ABR has attempted to bring together the best aspects of the genre, but overall they leave me wanting more. The various songs try to be brutal/chaotic/other, but aren’t quite brutal/chaotic/other enough. In the end, I’ll listen to this when I want some generic metalcore to drive to, but I wouldn’t be heartbroken if someone stole it like I would if they took The Chariot or Still Remains.