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Despite the cliché band name and the ridiculous lyrics, Salt The Wound’s Kill The Crown might very well be one of the best deathcore albums I’ve heard. I’m not a fan of the genre, in fact for the most part I utterly detest it, but Salt The Wound work incredibly well with the constraints of the genre to create an entertaining even if unoriginal album.
Musically, Salt The Wound is another one of those post The Black Dahlia Murder Bands. Lots of melodic death metal riffs mixed with mid pitched vocals and frequent breakdowns. The first real track To The Top is a relatively succinct demonstration for the rest of the album, opening with a high octane melodeath riff and powerful vocals, the song remains energetic throughout and even retains interest during the breakdowns.
Heck, I guess that’s why I like these guys so damn much, they don’t overuse the breakdowns and when they are used, they’re more than just connective tissue between the faster riffs. However, the band’s sound is rather one dimensional, the same playing style and tone is kept consistent throughout the album without anything to break it apart. Near the end of the album, the riffs begin to blur together and it becomes quite hard to pin point where one song ends and another begins.
Thankfully though, the band always manages to surprise me with some killer riffs such as the opening to Why Don’t You Have A Seat? Whose intro can only be described as perfect. However, as the other reviewer noted, the good riffs are SO good that some of the other riffs are left in the shadows. Cash on Delivery is a relatively uneventful song that opens with a breakdown before moving into some fairly uninspired Slaughter of the Soul/Heartwork riffage, fortunately this is the closest to a filler that the album has. Early Mornings and Late Nights quickly fixes this problem by moving straight into high octane melodeath/metalcore riffs and powerful and expressive vocals, the band is able to quickly regain their footing when they have a small blip in quality.
Unlike most deathcore bands, Salt The Wound never get boring, with the exception of some riffs here and there, this is some of the most entertaining deathcore I’ve heard in a while. Of course it’s not going to convince detractors of the scene of the genre’s worth, but as an example of melodic deathcore, I doubt there’s a better band currently active in the scene. Recommended for fans of actually good deathcore.
Since 2006, Salt the Wound has been dedicated to creating face-punching deathcore while still retaining the melody and direction a melodic death metal or metalcore band might have. After starting off with a ever present melodic touch, they all but abandoned it on their second full length, Ares, and went for a more pure deathcore sound. However, with Kill the Crown, Salt the Wound has moved forward and backwards: They return to their melodic selves but clearly show progression through talent and creativity.
The album starts of with the intro title track, Kill the Crown. After a quiet beginning, only 19 seconds in, the song explodes with blast beats and a pure deathcore sound. The second track (the first full length track), To the Top, immediately starts off with a melodic death metal/metalcore riff and not too far along the drummer starts up the blast beats again. Through out the album, Salt the Wound delivers top quality original melodic riffs. While deathcore purists might be saddened about their move away from pure deathcore, they will still enjoy the heavier, darker tracks such as Elle Ess Dee and The Cliff Before the Fall. Salt the Wound even experiments a little bit, evidenced by the opening riffs in Why Don't You Have a Seat or Early Mornings and Late Nights.
However, at 43.5 minutes, the deathcore band Salt the Wound can only produce so much non-deathcore material. The riffs, while catchy, begin to run together. The listener may start to notice half way through the album the similarities in the playing of the riffs. And with so many riffs, some not-so-great ones manage to slip through, such as the uninspired opening riff of A Year in the Suburbs.
The talent from Salt the Wound is what you would expect from a melodic deathcore band. The drummer is capable of pounding out speedy blast beats, but refrains from doing so every single second of every song to keep the drums original and refreshing. The guitarists and bassist display their skill with fast riffs and really fast strumming. The vocalist exhales a string of brutal vocals, switching from highs to lows effortlessly.
All in all, Kill the Crown is a great returning effort by Salt the Wound. The record is a constant unleashing of a perfect mixture of fury and melody. With only a few low points and a bit of repetition, you'll be sure to mosh to these songs.