Album Review :
Corpus Christi - The Darker Shades of White

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Artist: Corpus Christi
Album: The Darker Shades of White
Label: Victory Records
Release Date: February 17, 2009
Review by: Michael Mayer III

Tracklisting:

  1. Parade of Scars
  2. It’s Always Darkest Before the Dawn
  3. Marilyn
  4. Baptized in Fire
  5. Until the Day
  6. Fight for Your King
  7. Starry Nights, Cloudy Hearts
  8. Western Downfall
  9. The Sacrifice
  10. I Will Never Forget
  11. Prodigal

Corpus Christi? Isn’t that the black metal band? What? It’s a new band missing an ‘eye’? And so was my initial reaction to hearing about this new band. Yes, this is a very different band from the one you’ve probably seen on t-shirts in the past. This is Corpus Christi (only one ‘i’ folks), a Christian metalcore band from Victory Records. I use that term loosely, of course, because we all know genre titles are practically meaningless. A better way to sum up the band would be take the screaming of Underoath, the guitars and singing of Oh, Sleeper and add in their own touches in a big smelting pot. Even then you’ll only get an idea of what they sound like on their debut album, The Darker Shades of White.

Maybe it’s not the most original sound, but sometimes I don’t want some crazy outer space music complete with exotic animal cries or video game music with trumpets. Sometimes I just need a fix of aggressive drums, brutal screaming and killer guitars on my way to work. These guys can wake me up and get my blood pumping just as good as any cup of coffee, only minus the bad aftertaste. Sure, the songs may seem a bit formulaic, but this is more true with the singing at the chorus bits. You know, after your ears have been assaulted by the drums and screaming, you get the sing-a-long chorus that you know you’ll hear at least a couple more times with maybe a slight change in pitch before the song is through. At least here you are treated to a stronger, deeper singing voice than most music along this line has nowadays.

That being said, this is certainly a talented group of guys. The guitar playing stands out both in terms of great riffs (as in ‘Baptized in Fire’) or a well-placed solo that moves the song along like in ‘Fight for Your King’. You can also tell by the song titles that these guys aren’t ashamed of their faith. There’s a clear positive message that the ‘other’ Corpus band would never pursue and for me that instantly makes it more meaningful. This is one of those albums that will uplift you and keep you going instead of painting a bleak picture on life.

Overall: For that reason alone, I’ll be spinning this despite it’s occasionaly repetitive sound. That’s aside from being a great 7 AM wake-up call too. The Darker Shades of White is certainly worth owning for any fan of this style of music and Corpus Christi are a great band to be on the lookout for with all their talent. It’s just going to be a matter of how willing they will be to push themselves beyond any genre ‘box’ to craft music out of the ordinary.

Gems of this album are: ‘Fight for Your King’, ‘Baptized in Fire’, ‘The Sacrifice’

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