30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on October 28, 2005
Four and a half stars
So you want to become the archetype. Take a look at the back of the CD. See the guys who look like Avenged Sevenfold's trifling and trendy younger brothers? Still want to become the archetype? And what of this Solid State records business? Alright, let's just throw the CD in...
(55 minutes later...)
Holy metal mayhem Batman!
I read such great reviews for this album, there was just no way I could pass it up for the price of $9.99, despite my reservations concerning the label and the back cover. I was SURE this must be another mediocre metalcore band.
Not so my friends. This is metal on many fronts. The album opens with a Transylvanian synth passage before launching into a blast of fury. For a few seconds, you will hesitate, and think all your preconceptions will prove true, but then the dual guitar attack will veer off into a run reminscient of Necrophagist's or Children of Bodom's ability.
Throughout the album, you will hear echoes of Meshuggah, In Flames, Opeth, and many other metal bands, but this band is not simply a clone. And do not be fooled into thinking In Flames "owns" these guys. Nothing they have put out recently matches the intensity of this album, and even at its peak, In Flames never showed this kind of technical musicianship, even if they did write better songs.
No, one thing you can expect to love about this album is the talent of the band members. Changes in speed, time signature switches, furious blastbeats, tempered rhythms, earth shattering guitar solos, and progressive, complex riffing make Terminate Damnation a truly memorable listen.
I must add, too, how much I enjoy the acoustic classical passages, which are more disconnected from the songs than the fluidly integrated passages indicative of a band like Opeth. It is obvious these guys are masters of their trades, and true students of their music.
Rounding out the diversity of this treasure is a stab at epic songwriting, "Elegy". I find it interesting how the lyrics for this song match those of so many other death metal bands: "Death reigns over the earth, oppressing justice and truth, nations plagued by despair are collapsing hopelessly into themselves", and yet, this band approaches these feelings from a Christian viewpoint, while most other death metal bands...well...don't. I don't really have a point to go with that, just that it's interesting.
Anyway, this song is mostly a piece of perfection. The first leg of the track contains some sick death metal progressions (and some dud moments too), before retreating into a depressingly poignant piano passage. The last movement of the track, aptly titled "Triumph", adds that invigorating Denouement one can expect to hear at the end of any quality, epic track.
Despite the obvious mounds of garbage hitting the metal shelves these days, the sheer number of bands and the age of the internet have still guaranteed us a constant inlfux of great metal bands. Becoming the Archetype has convinced me it plans on being one of those bands that will forge ahead and blaze the true path of metal. Any metal fan would be nuts not to follow along.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on April 6, 2007
I really dislike those ignorant jerks (to put it in polite and unbannable terms) who continually say oh these guys are christians therefore they are not metal. shut up. who cares what they sing about really. if they want to be christians let them, its called freedom of religion.
its funny these people. Go to a Deicide review. on there these same people i mentioned above will be complaining about the christians talking about deicide's lyrical content, saying "its just music lighten up". yeah, i say HYPOCRITE to you folks. ha ha!
and to just ignore and forget this band just because of their lyrical content is a horrible mistake. these guys are very talented musicians that make brutally heavy music, but at the same time sounding unique and original, not like half the bands comning out nowadays.
this album did take a little getting used to. you know, when you first hear an album and your like "ehh its okay" and then later down the road your like "AWESOME!!!' thats what this album was like.
my favorite songs are probably ex nihlio, elegy and the epigone. trivial paradoxym is a really weird and heavy song that just seems to go all over the place, and one man parade is an awesome straight forward rocker. the second half of elegy is just beautiful with the piano to guitar to the brutal end. they are coming out with a new album in may, looking forward to it.
its kind of hard to put these guys into a catagory. they dont really sound like anyone else. but its kind of progressive sounding like opeth and at times melodic like dark tranquility.
Yes this is a christian band. their lyricals are very meaningful and touching, so if you are a devout christian that happens to like metal this is a great band for you. and if your not christian, they still are a unique and talented band that deserves to be heard.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on July 4, 2006
This album off of Solid State records is simply amazing! The vocals are low and poetic at the same time. And to FCVoxBoi: why did you say they can't scream those kind of words? They can scream whatever they want, and they sound good doing it. It is a welcome change from all the gore-based lyrics of Gorerotted, Cannibal Corpse, or Gorgoroth. So lay off of trying to tell people what they can or can't scream. They sound great. Anyway, for newcomers, this album is a great place to start with positive lyrics and good heavy music. Plus, it would be a good thing to do to support BTA because they are a new band trying to get their promising careers started. Get acquainted with metal and support this band at the same time. Pick it up ASAP!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on June 23, 2006
Wow! This is an absolutely breath-taking album! I heard bits and pieces of this record on the bands purevolume.com page and thought to myself, "this is some really nifty-cool music." Well, on June 22, I got to see them play in my hometown of Fayetteville, Arkansas, and was absolutely blown away. These guys are one of the greastest bands I have ever seen. So then I really started to hunt around for the CD and began to feel a little bit of genuine panick when I couldn't find it at any of the stores nearby (yeah, I was hooked that bad). Trust me, when you hear the rest of the album, you will think it's a lot more than "nifty-cool." Think As I Lay Dying meets Opeth with a little bit of The Showdown and a tasty sprinkle of August Burns Red and The Chariot. Plus, they have extremely strong Christian beliefs that really show through in their deep, poetic lyrics that really reflect on the absolute hopelesness of a world without Jesus Christ. Even their name stands for the spiritual beauty one can find in Christ and Christ alone. This is an amazing album from an amazing band. Just go buy the dang thing, already!!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on January 8, 2006
Alright, I'll start this with the truth- I'm not under 13. I'm actually 18, but I lost my password. Anyways.
I was first introduced to BTA when I saw them live in November with The Agony Scene, Scarlet, and Nodes of Ranvier at the Mesa Theater in Grand Junction, Colorado. They were the second band to play, and with high remarks for them from my friend, I was having high expectations. How can you not have high expectations for a new band when the crap that comes out nowadays all sounds the same? I was looking for a jewel in the dirt or nothing at all.
Luckily, I was impressed... overly impressed... by BTA's performance that night. I was also disappointed, not because of anything the band played, not because of the band itself, but because of the Theaters sound system. You couldn't hear the vocals, as was the case with the rest of the bands (minus The Agony Scene, who put on an amazing performance that night, as did Nodes of Ranvier. Scarlet sucked.)
So, the next day at school I asked my friend to hand over that BTA songs he had downloaded. First song he put onto my school computer was Elegy. I played it, and at first I was like 'what. the. hell.' Not because the music was bad, because it wasn't. Not because the vocals suck, because they really, really, really do not suck at all. But because I couldn't believe that BTA had JUST come out. BTA has that metalcore sound that sounds like it should have come out years ago, because they don't follow any formula for any type of metal. I was blown away. I was also surprised to find out they were Christian, which intesified my respect for them and my love for the music (before even getting the CD) by 100x. I am a fan of Christian metal now, entirely because of BTA.
I bought the CD a few days later. I had to drive 45 minutes before I could listen to it, so when I got home I popped it in. I was confused by the intro, because you don't usually hear the synth in anything other than black metal, but when the best, most mindblowing track on the CD, 'Into Oblivion', kicked in, I was absolutely shocked. The music these five guys put together was just brutal! It was beautiful! It was groundbreaking! I was not expecting the acoustic passages in the song either, which only made me love the song that much more- most metal bands coming out today won't put acoustic passages in, because that's not 'metal'- but BTA did, and they did it very, very well.
The rest of the CD just seemed to pass in a blur. To me, that's a very good thing, because when a CD just seems to go so fast that you can't even comprehend everything one time through, it means that the CD was amazing. I was so stunned by what I had just heard that I listened to it again. And again. And again. 'Elegy' and 'The Epigone' are some of the best tracks on the CD, combining the Christian message and the brutal death metal aspects, and not screwing it up whatsoever. I love the Christian message, because bands that come out now are afraid to talk about that stuff, with the fear that they won't be held so highly by the 'hardcore' kids in the scene. That obviously never bothered BTA, and I absolutely love that about them. BTA is the band that made me turn my band into a Christian metal band, because I so badly want that, to be in the same league as BTA, even though I know I never will.
What BTA did, however, was to show me that there are better things out there than 'hate, kill, f***'. BTA showed me what I have been searching for for so long after hearing Killswitch Engage- BTA showed me there is HOPE in this world, and hope in the music. I love them for showing me this, for giving me their music. But I love God for giving me this life, giving me this music, putting these guys on this Earth, but most of all, loving me even when I don't deserve it. Thank you, God, and thank you BTA.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 1, 2005
Solid State had a, well at the sake of sounding cheesy, a pretty solid year. Norma Jean's "O God The Aftermath" was fantastic, despite what what others may say and As Cities Burn took a stalling post-hardcore sound and put out a pretty decent record, Haste The Day's sophomore effort was neither here nor there but far from the worst album of the year, and on top of that they'll be dropping the new Demon Hunter album in October. Chalk another up for Solid State with Becoming The Archetype. If you didn't like the fact that Solid State had been putting mostly post-hardcore and metalcore records as of late, then Becoming The Archetype is for you. Their not hardcore, their not metalcore, their not post-hardcore, screamo, moshcore, or any other stupid and ridiculous name that gets tagged onto aggressive music these days...their just simply a metal band and a damn fine one at that.
There's a lot of really refreshing things going on on this album. Not necessarily groundbreaking by any standards, but theirs a need for the musicianship displayed on this album to be appreciated. Probably the nicest thing about Becoming The Archetype is the natural progressive nature of their writing. Theirs a lot going on here, but not so much that it sounds confusing. They blend a more traditional thrash metal sound with hints of death metal, acoustic passages ala Opeth, and very mood-setting synth work. Vocally the album is nothing to get excited about as the growls are fairly standard but we do get a few gutteral screams ala Circle Of Dead Children or Despised Icon but perhaps not quite as over the top. Don't expect any whiny clean vocals here though because you're not going to find it. The drumming is very straight forward, lots of double bass, but very effective nonetheless and some blast beats that feel a lot like Despised Icon. There's a few breakdowns thrown in for good measure, but nothing that is predictable. Becoming The Archetype utilizes the breakdown the same way that Between The Buried And Me does--for texturing the writing, not using them as the basis of the song. Other than that, the guitar work displayed here has a much more traditional sound akin to older In Flames (that is, of course, when In Flames actually harmonized their riffs) with a few techier riffs thrown in for good measure. The solos are strong, nothing that'll make you want to pick up a guitar, but far more capable than that of a lot of the bands out there. The synth work that appears on this album reminds me a lot of the way Children Of Bodom utilizes synths and keys.
All in all, this is would be a worthy purchase for someone who wants a bit of a break from the standard fare of releases this year and even though it's much more of a metal record rather than your usual As I Lay Dying rip off, traditional metal fans as well as those into the new school of aggressive music fans could equally get into this. Highlight tracks include the albums 11:39 epic "Elegy," "Into Oblivion," and "Ex Nihilo." For fans of Opeth, Between The Buried And Me, Children Of Bodom, and Glass Casket.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 25, 2006
Becoming The Archetype's release Terminate Damnation constitutes the best Christian metal record I've ever heard. I used to love old Tourniquet and Mortification when I was in junior high. BTA blows them away. Their style is so unique. Of course I've never listened to secular metal bands like Opeth which some have compared them to...
There are so many rhythm changes and progressions. The acoustic parts add a lot of depth to the album. Musically, BTA is unbelievable, I've just never heard metal this good. Lyrically, its so uplifting for a Christian. I especially love the lyrics of Ex Nihilo: "A thousand decades of despair will pass away in an instant. And You and I will be there. With hands raised in victory"
100% recommended for all metal fans.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2005
BTA, I must say, has to be one of the most talented and technically eloquent bands I have ever had the everlasting joy of listening to. This album is one of those great releases that one can listen to over, and over and over again. BTA's debut album will be hard to match, as every song is a wonderful blast of in your face technical metal with Jason's brutal and multi-faceted ability screaming forth the deeply held beliefs of the band. Punishing power and soulful explosion of the truth of life is what you will receive from Becoming the Archetype.
The musical talent of BTA is what I noticed first. The technical artistry of each member is clearly heard and greatly appreciated. The ferocity is felt all through your soul. Jason's vocals are multi-ranging, from low, mid and high growls. The guitar work by Jon, Sean and Seth are just incredible. They are not just a hardcore band. They are so technical and multi-faceted that their incredible sound fits into a category all by themselves. BTA's talent is evident in their live shows as they sound as perfect as their debut album does.
For any fan of great metal who desires in your face hardcore brutal sound with technical substance and beautiful melodic interludes that make your soul quake this great CD will leave you sweaty and in a bloody mess.
While every song is a technical metal masterpiece there are a few songs that are epic in nature and deserve mention. Into Oblivion, Elegy and the Trivial Paroxysm. I am really at a loss as to what words would do justice to these songs. So many hardcore or metal bands play out so quickly because they lack substance and complexity. However for BTA their technical prowess and incredible vision allows them to create amazing complexities while at the same time having a powerful sound that is a beautiful as it is technical, as devistating as it is enticing.
The deeply held beliefs of the band members also gives BTA an inner explosive power that is greatly expressed through the lyrics and singing of Jason Wisdom. All in all, one of, if not thee best metal album I have ever had the joy of banging too.
***** Five starts, a perfect album. Highly recommended.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 30, 2005
Somebody in Atlanta must have broken a seal or blown a heraldic trumpet, because a new metal band just came screaming onto the scene like an Apocalyptic asteroid. Becoming the Archetype, a quintet lead by bassist/vocalist Jason Wisdom, is a metal (excuse the cliché (and the parenthetical)) tour de force that brings back the epic metal instrumental anthem.
These guys have got chops. The primary example is "Night's Sorrow,' a classical guitar instrumental that is beautifully arranged and performed and had me searching for a 'performed by Phil Keaggy' credit in the liner notes. The album, Terminate Damnation, is a treasure trove of blastbeats, grindcore, death and chug-chug riffage liberally woven with skillful leads and instrumentals that include guitars, piano and keys. Oddly and appropriately enough, the album was mixed in Denmark by the soon-to-be-legendary Tue Madsen at Antfarm studios. Odd because the band is from Georgia, appropriate because the influence of Danish and Nordic metal bands is clear from the band's distinct yet (look a pun ') archetypical sound.
But more about the music: Yes, they've got the requisite fast beats, roaring distortion, screams, snarls, growls, etc., that make a metal band a metal band these days, but they've got an emotional edge that shows through. An emotion other than rage, that is. Granted, rage does kick in the door and redecorate the living room with bullets many times on this one, but songs like "Elegy," an 11 minute magnum opus, and the aforementioned "Night's Sorrow" (one of the most beautiful classical guitar pieces I've ever heard) are so full of passionate energy, one almost forgets that one is listening to a brutal hardcore band. And before you ask: Yes, redecorating is a form of rage. Just ask Hildi.
Honestly, the music tells the tale more than the words, which are relatively few in comparison to the expansive songs. Lyrically, the band is simple with common themes of failure, forgiveness, judgment, et cetera, and one is almost tempted to say "Who cares!" because the music is just so darn good. They do win an award for most vocabulary words in song titles however, and I include definitions below for the linguistically impaired. Having said that, man can these guys find their way around a fretboard! Licks go from melodically beautiful to dissonant, key-shifting experiments in oddity, to blazing fast leads of bleeps and bloops that sound like a room full of chimpanzees all playing Q*Bert at once.
Also, the album art, a mural by a D. Seagreave had no hits for is awesome. It has nothing to do with the quality of the music, but good album covers go a long way.
Before a final instrumental, Terminate Damnation ends with the heart of a warrior-poet: "The time has come/ arise from death/ victory is close at hand/ take up the sword and follow me/ out of nothing into a new creation." If I am forced to criticize (which I assuredly am), I could say that going with a very typical sound style and mixing could have hurt a band that belongs to a very common genre as Becoming the Archetype, but because of their technical prowess and musical skill, they come out ahead with a strong first release that establishes them as a band with staying power.
The Terminate Damnation Glossary for the Metal Vocabulary Impaired:
Archetype (ar-ki-type): an inherited idea or mode of thought in the psychology of C. G. Jung that is derived from the experience of the race and is present in the unconscious of the individual (so there!)
Elegy (ell-uh-jee): a pensive or reflective poem that is usually nostalgic or melancholy
Epigone (eh-pig-on): an inferior imitator or disciple
Ex Nihilo (ecks nee-hil-oh): out of nothing
Denouement (day-noo-mahn): falling action, literally "untying", the outcome of a complex sequence of events (usually used in reference to the plot of a dramatic or literary work)
Paroxysm (pahr-oks-izm): a sudden violent emotion or action, an outburst
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2006
Becoming the Archetype is a metal band unlike others. It does have it's screaming parts, but unlike other metal groups this band incorporates piano, progressive, and organ chords that blend in so well with the guitars that you wonder what BTA should still be called metal. Even though it's on Solid State, I wouldn't be put off about it. Don't get me wrong though, it has some dud moments where the melody seems to lead nowhere. However when the music gets good it makes up for all the blank parts.
Songs like "Elegy" (a superbly conducted piece, it uses both metal and classical elements), "March of the Dead"( a chilling organ piece), "Denouement," "Night's Sorrow" (also entirely guitar chords, no metal or growls), "The Epigone" (all metal but still engaging), and "The Trivial Paroxysm" (rock with piano)- these are all worth listening to. In all, BTA is a new Face to metal and definitely surpasses many others. I couldn't stress more that BTA is definitely worth your buy.