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God Forbid: Earthsblood

God Forbid: Earthsblood

Metalcore/Melodic Death Metal
Rating: 3.5/5.0

God Forbid's 'Earthsblood' is another example of great American metal that measures high on bone crushing intensity and skillful musicianship. Conversely, God Forbid registers depressingly low as they continue to perpetuate the redundant trends of modern metal. This includes the ongoing use of metalcore as a the basic musical foundation and dirty and/or death vocals as the first means of vocal presentation. Is there nothing new under the American metal sun? Fortunately, God Forbid does both things well, even if it becomes monotonous. Thankfully, on 'Earthsblood' also shows us some glimmers of hope.

The hope comes in two forms. First, on more than half the songs, the metalcore and death-like metal is under girded by a slender weaving of traditional melodic heavy metal. At times it is ever so slight to be unnoticeable. However, when does rise it makes songs like 'Earthsblood' and the masterful 'Walk Alone' hugely listenable, accessible and even heroic. Remarkably and quite ironically (since most metalcore bands are not known for their fret skills), the best representation of this trend is found in Doc Coyle's hugely entertaining guitar solos which, more often than not, are surrounded by melodic metal.

Second, God Forbid demonstrates a true growth towards, albeit extreme, progressive metal. Again, this may be hard to pick up and may require more than a single listen. Yet songs like 'Earthsblood,' 'Gaia (The Vultures),' and 'The New Clear' show aggressive arrangements with enough complex mixtures of style to challenge (if they can stand it) the most diehard young metalcore fan. However, I suspect many modern metalcore fans will miss this entirely because they are basic musically ignorant folk.

God Forbid's 'Earthsblood' still falls squarely in the modern American metalcore, possibly melodic death metal, camp to be as fairly typical and predictable as most of their current peers. Unless, of course, you listen to this disc a little more carefully and thoughtfully: you'll find some fine threads of melodic heavy metal, superb guitar solos, and a pleasing trend towards more progressive metal. Otherwise, except for their diehard fans, most will find 'Earthsblood' to be more of the monolithic modern trends.

In Short

God Forbid's 'Earthsblood' still falls squarely in the modern American metalcore, possibly melodic death metal, camp to be as fairly typical and predictable as most of their current peers. Unless, of course, you listen to this disc a little more carefully and thoughtfully: you'll find some fine threads of melodic heavy metal, superb guitar solos, and a pleasing trend towards more progressive metal.

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