A Love Ends Suicide - In The Disaster - Metal Blade Records  2006
11 Songs
Running Time: 39:09 

Attention, Metal Blade: The debut album I've just received from Southern California's A Love Ends Suicide has many glaring errors that I feel should be pointed out before it's shipped to stores and made available for public consumption. Firstly, someone's pulled an ...And Justice For All on the guitarists, submerging their performance behind the bass and drum mix. I suppose I shouldn't complain, though, as the guitars of "Cold Summer" and the title track did little aside from remind me that there are a host of other bands who do this emocore / melodic metalcore hybrid a lot more convincingly. The harmony vocals on the title track come off as tossed in to appeal to the girlfriends of the band members, and by the time we come to "Of Day Dream And Fantasy", yet another problem arises. Maybe it's just me, but don't the past three songs sound practically interchangeable? Fast part + slow part + faster part + high pitched whining + brutal breakdown x momentary slacker Euro-metal riffing so as not to seem "too hard" = A Love Ends Suicide thus far. Going the self-produced route saved the band bucketloads of money, I'm sure, but the guitars have the same tone throughout, giving no sense of dynamic to the material, and when the band tries to create musical peaks and valleys in their songs - as in "The Black Art", it only serves to further cement the lack of any memorability in lyric or in riff. With industry heavyweights such as Tim Lambesis (of As I Lay Dying) at work pushing the band, you'd think a sound this derivative of... well, everything wouldn't have gotten past five band members and their management. Headbangers out of the "metalcore" loop will find much humour in the lyrics, but likely as not the White Belt Brigade will order their ALES shirts one size smaller than is needed and begin using quotes from the heart-torn lyrics in their MySpace profiles post-haste. On that level, I suppose, lines like "Every moment with you is so precious." work. As empassioned as the lyric writer may be, however, the word "precious" has never lent itself to a bout of Pit Fu, which is just the sort of audience A Love Less Suicide is out for.

"Skate Junction" continues the trip to Blahsville, but things looked brighter for a moment, the band unwittingly locking on to a fairly nice riff for "Rise!" section of the number. Sadly, it's much too little much too late to save this sinking ship that's been taking on water since the first song. Myself, I don't mourn the lack of artistic ability here so much as the time I spent being subjected to what amounts to expecting a lump of coal and getting a handful of crap instead. Hold onto those day jobs, guys...tightly. And wouldn't you know, the bands Official Web Site is... 

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