Screams of Erida - _Burn the World_
(Xact Records, 2005)
by: Z. D. Smith (6.5 out of 10)
Well, it's a metalcore band. You can't really get around that, and at this point there's no use in bitching about it. I need spend no more words describing what kind of music Screams of Erida plays than to say it's Trustkill-style metalcore. Luckily, they avoid many of the genre's go-to-jail-do-not-pass-go pitfalls -- the clean vocals are used very sparingly, and where they pop up they do not embarrass, and the the breakdowns are reasonable in length and ingenuity (though I'll be honest -- my hardcore sense was never so strong that I could necessarily pick out a breakdown from, say, a slow heavy part).

They don't write bad songs, either. The vocals are very respectable, though hardly original. Basically, when it comes to this type of music, you live or die on the strength of your riffs -- and there actually some good ones here. They held my interest throughout the length of this EP, and there are enough interesting changes or spots where the band makes good use of its three guitars to give them some character of their own.

Unfortunately, Screams of Erida still sound like a young band. The thing about a genre like this, with such rigidly defined conventions, is that there isn't really a lot of wiggle room when it comes to musicianship, and so any sloppiness is going to stick out like a sore thumb. Which is not to say that Screams of Erida are sloppy -- but they could use just one more layer of polish. It's a subtle thing; it only comes out in some of the dual (or triple?) lead parts, or a couple of the more technical fills and solos, and even then only for a second, but there are just certain spots which will make you wish they had done one more take.

That said, Screams of Erida are obviously talented and passionate, and are far more than another third-rate carbon copy of anyone. This EP is good, but I bet what comes next will be very much worth looking out for.

And I bet they kill live.


(article published 7/4/2005)

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