It's no mystery that many of the bands that rose out of the hardcore scene of the 2000s have faded to obscurity, but there are a few that occasionally still make a splash. Delivering their first album in eight years (following their split in 2013 and subsequent reunion in 2015), Underoath is back and are ready to do just that. Underoath embrace melody fully in their new album Erase Me, pushing their sound to a more accessible stage - but is it enough to make something big?
Erase Me tries out a number of different things, and it does all of them pretty well. Underoath really tackle an electronic vibe in 'On My Teeth,' adding a nice touch to their otherwise pretty heavy delivery. Electronica is explored even further in the effected 'No Frame,' which has a chilling sense of losing humanity with its robotic filter. Opening track 'It Has To Start Somewhere' is exactly as its titles suggests: not a daring track by any means, but a very solid start to the record. 'Sink With You' is a very daring track altogether, and it pays off well. It's very dynamic and punchy, combining very aggressive delivery with an electronic, sharp bass. The ending is huge as well, bringing a hardcore breakdown tastefully into the mix, effectively becoming the album's creative centerpoint.
While Erase Me is certainly a refreshing breath of air, it's not breaking any ground. Much of the album plays it pretty safe, relying on the nostalgia of the mid-2000s to carry the vibe of it through. There's nothing wrong with that, as it does provide for some great moments, like the intense 'In Motion,' but it leaves a bit left to be desired. Even some of the songs that fully embrace a new idea have trouble carrying their weight. 'ihateit' is one of the only songs that focusses entirely on melody, and behind its sweet tune has a very overused sentiment that detracts from its message ("You're the only thing that gets me high" has been used in far too many songs far too many times).
Underoath embrace melody fully in their new album Erase Me, not changing the game but establishing a firm place back in the alternative metal scene. It's always refreshing to hear this sort of sound with an added modern touch to it, and as more and more bands continue to do it, it's going to start taking a lot more to maintain relevancy.
Favorite Track: Sink With You
Least Favorite Track: Rapture
Rating: 74 / 100
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