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Type in "Trivium" on youtube always turns out to be enjoyable moments for me. Whether it be a live version of "A Gunshot to the Head of Trepidation" or a video of "To the Rats", reacting to all those comments is always fun. On one side, there are the fanboys, who claim Trivium to be the metal saviours, ture definers of Thrash or the new Metallica/Maiden. On the other hand, there are the haters, who all think Trivium sucks, or are clearly just another metalcore band. What I want to point out with this paragraph? I don't know. I just recommend it to anyone with a good grasp of the English language to piss off some people (whether it be haters or lovers) with some valid argumentations, knowing that they'll crawl in despair having someone to react on their worthless rant/praise.
As I'm writing this new paragraph, I suddenly CAN think of a meaning of the previous paragraph. Many reactions of fanboys towards people showing disrespect contain the ever so smart argument "you just hate them because their famous and earn money, and because you think they're metalcore". I, however, think that I can speak of the majority of the haters that we have other reasons not to like it. The dreadful music for example, or the arrogance of the band. There are in fact several reasons why I see this release as one of the negative turns of metal with mainstream succes.
Mainstream succes, yes. This record has got quite some attention. Mostly because of the general sound they play. Melodic metalcore may not sound as the right term to express this band's sound, but it is the most accurate. Expect metal in the sense of melodic death metal, but without the death-sound. The first song already proves that. Rain is an energetic song. The verse is speedy, the chorus catchy. Whether this song is good or not is up to debate, but it is undeniable true that in terms of originality, this song contributes nothing.
As the album moves on, various imitations of Rain pass by. All do they have the speedy verse, and all do they have the catchy chorus. This is the biggest reason why Trivium did go wrong with this album. Riffs are bland and unoriginial. Take any general metal band in existence, and there are too many similarities to call Trivium good songwriters. While the riffs are just boring to listen to, the solo's are definitely more enjoyable. Although it's all written in a neat minor scale, and even though most of it reeks to mindless wankery, the melodies in it fit the music.
All of this is directed by vocalist/guitarist Matt Heafy. A person known not only for his guitar talented, arrogance but also of his voice. To explain his voice is simple. He does is bad. Bad how he rips his vocal chords apart, and bad how it sounds. Although his clean vocals are not as bad to listen to, listening to his forced screaming is a pain. In most of the songs Matt tried to balance the dynamics with doing screams in the verse, and clean vocals in the chorus. Not only proves this the lack of songwriting talent, it also makes me to think I put the album on repeat-song.
There are, however, still some enjoyable moments throughout the album. Dying in your Arms is, save for the bridge, a simple but funny song. Leads and solo's in songs such as Departure, Declaration or A Gunshot to the Head of Trepidation prove that these guys DO have the potential. It's just not enough to be anything enjoyable. If Trivium really want to make an album that will not only please the mainstream audience, but also the casual metalhead, Trivium needs to create something unique. Something that doesn't sound like the 10000 other "heavy metal" bands.