Through the Eyes of the Dead - _Malice_
(Prosthetic Records, 2007)
by: Jeremy Ulrey (8.5 out of 10)
Over the course of an extremely centrifugal revolving door lineup (guitarist Justin Longshore is the sole remaining original member), Through the Eyes of the Dead have morphed from a promising metalcore outfit into -- with this year's brutalized _Malice_ -- an extreme aggro ensemble sporting more death metal than hardcore influences. New screamer Nate Johnson (ex-Premonitions of War) is more one dimensional in his channeled fury than departing Anthony Gunnels, yet his is a diaphragm-driven bellow much more apropos of the band's new direction and as a result, fan fave Gunnels isn't sorely missed at all.

Getting Erik Rutan to produce was a step in the right direction if the band were to trod a more well hewn metallic attack, and in songs like "To Wage a War" one can hear the a-melodic yet sing along-worthy choruses of death metal's Old Guard. On the other hand, "As Good as Dead" hearkens back to TtEotD's hardcore drenched past with mosh pit breakdowns and crystalline dual leads. Even in its most death driven moments, the riffs take on the stunted gallop of hardcore more so than the fluid triplet picking of speed metal. Album opener "Failure in the Flesh" most exemplifies these rhythmic punk leanings while tossing in melodic metal leads and cascaded descending riffs. Elsewhere, "Dead End Roads" and "The Undead Parade" jettison the metalcore altogether and focus in on a straight death approach. Overall, though, it's not the sound that makes a band like Through the Eyes of the Dead succeed, but the strength of the songs, and throughout the 38 minutes of _Malice_ there is nary a false move.


(article published 2/12/2007)

10/17/2005 T DePalma 3.5 Through the Eyes of the Dead - Bloodlust
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