Say hello to the newest bunch of talented kids who're kicking a dead horse for all its worth. They're called Society's Plague and according to the official website, they personify the credo 'Metalcore is evolving.' Having listened to the band's The Human, The Canvas debut, this writer wholly agrees. Society's Plague are your run of the mill As I Lay Dying/All That Remains clones who add symphonic keyboard nonsense to their repertoire. If such a small 'improvement' constitutes evolution, why, what the hell. Besides, these guys are still billed as metalcore? Haven't all the tweens reared on Killswitch moved on to Gojira and Opeth already? Who's gonna listen to Society's Plague?
If you're thinking of a few million susceptible 12 year olds, then sorry mate. Between Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga and that Justin Bieber chick there's not much of an audience left for metalcore and Society's Plague. Oh well, as the AC/DC song goes, 'It's a long way to the top if you wanna rock n roll.' The piercing analysis done with, Society's Plague are by no means a band who're content to remain semi-talented copycats. This writer may find a lot to be critical about on this debut, but there's a silver lining among the dark clouds, ladies and gents. Let's deal with the darkness first. Ten years down the road the Joe Roger-Roger Clem guitar duo might be unstoppable, however on this album their potential is a no-show. The riffs, the leads, the solos ... you've heard 'em all before. There's even contrasting clean/harsh vocal lines (plus horrid hardcore gangsta shouts—ugh) that should be anathema by now, since Scar Symmetry are the style's masters and no one comes second.
If you're discouraged by such heavy handed judgment, read on because this is the part where the album's virtues are examined. To the band's credit, The Human, The Canvas is a complete package where a polished mixed comes hand in hand with a ton of melody. When Society's Plague delivers such winning tunes as the title track, Legions, The Few And The Fallen and The Masquerade, why, it's golden. Thus we find the sextet at a crossroads; either go down the predictable route and suck or strive for innovative material. Where to Society's Plague?
Say hello to the newest bunch of talented kids who're kicking a dead horse, metalcore and/or melodic death metal, for all its worth. Yet, The Human, The Canvas is a complete package where a polished mixed comes hand in hand with a ton of melody.