Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Attila - About That Life

Attila has always been on the edge. Their first two albums were pretty shitty, and then Rage came along and got a lot of attention due to the musicians actually doing a good job on it. Then Outlawed got released and their popularity skyrocketed (well, sort of). I love Outlawed; I understand it, although the lyrics on it are corny as hell, the music in itself is really catchy, interesting, and badass. They literally took the whole overly cocky rapper attitude to the limit in a deathcore fashion. But what made Outlawed so good was that they did such a good job of keeping it metal and not letting it all go too far. I actually ended up buying that album on CD, and I still jam it every once in a while because…well…it’s fun to listen to! There’s nothing bad about it! Okay, two years later, Attila have grown in popularity, but are still fairly underground. Pretty much the only reason for them being popular is that they have such an upbeat, fun, and energetic sound. I was very excited to hear what Attila would release next.

The Georgia deathcore band did what very few bands have done. That is releasing their worst album right after releasing their best album. I’m sorry, I’m not even going to gradually lead into this, I’m just going to start right off with this is possibly one of the single worst albums of 2013 along with Goliath, Super Collider, and possibly some others that I don’t know about. But really, there were two main reasons why I loved Attila, the first being what I stated above; they don’t take the silly cocky rapper attitude too far, and the second reason being that they have a lot more to their music than constant breakdowns. The second reason was actually the #1 reason I gave them the thumbs up because all other bands with their theme are all about the breakdowns.

And now that the party-themed deathcore band are at the top of the pile, they go with the lowest common denominator and take those two reasons I liked them so much and turned them inside out. Even the fact that they’re better-than-average musicians isn’t enough to make up for what they’ve done here. This is how bad it is: IN THE FIRST FIFTEEN SECONDS OF THE FIRST SONG, they manage to take both those things. In the first five seconds, tell me you didn’t roll your eyes at least once, then at the ten second mark, after shaking your head and rolling your eyes, you get angry. You do that “REALLY, GUYS? COME ON!” sigh when you hear the Emmure-style playing that they did such a good job at avoiding on the past three albums. But no, they really took things to the extreme when it comes to the breakdowns. Seriously, the title track on Outlawed has one of the catchiest breakdowns I’ve ever heard. But you won’t find any of that here. It’s the same breakdown after breakdown thing that Emmure is so infamous for. In fact, this is pretty much just Emmure, except much more egotistical and with slightly better musicians.

Thankfully, it’s not 100% lost because the Georgians still manage to toss in a few fancy fast breakdowns (like in Hellraiser) to show that they’re still an instrumentally tight band. But really, after that, the most interesting breakdown you’ll hear on this album is the one at the beginning of Callout. Seriously? Is this what you’re going to call THE Attila album? You did better both musically AND instrumentally on all of your other albums, and Soundtrack to a Party was a complete load of shit! I probably should’ve seen this coming because they were going further in this direction with each album, finally going to the limit with Outlawed. But then again, there are so many things that they could have avoided to make About That Life at least TOLERABLE.

This album is making other rap-influenced metal bands look a lot better than they really are simply because of the predictable songwriting and the uninteresting structure. The majority of the album is four chords, most of them sounding like the same one. You listen to Break Shit and turn around and think “Well, at least Limp Bizkit actually had a catchy sound to their horrible song Break Stuff”. The monotony of Unforgivable makes 311’s Down sound like an anthem. Yes, it’s that bad, they make LIMP BIZKIT sound legit. And I bet Fronz has taken a lot of inspiration from them. It’s just so fucking stupid!

One of the unique things about Attila is their lyrics. The ones on Outlawed (sorry I keep using it as an example because it’s the only Attila album I really know well) are actually really funny. They’ve got some cockiness and some stupid party-themed stuff, but they were at least interesting and original (for the most part). I don’t pay attention to lyrics in death metal very much because I usually can’t understand them. But I looked up the Outlawed album’s lyrics just out of curiosity. The fucking problem with About That Life is that there’s a lot of rapping (yes, RAPPING) where you can hear every word crystal clear; AND THE WORDS ARE FUCKING RETARDED. THIS GUY IS TURNING INTO LIL WAYNE, THE GUY WHO RELEASES ALBUMS ABOUT HIS DICK AND HOW HE’S ABOVE EVERYONE ELSE.

I don’t like lyrics, because they usually suck. But these are on a whole different level. I can see it now, someone is going to get the inspirational lyrics “You can do whatever you want in life, just don’t be a fucking bitch!” or “Punch that bitch!” tattooed across their back. And I’m just a metalhead, so I don’t really know a whole lot about the thug life, but I’m pretty sure the thug life isn’t about drinking, women, partying, and drugs. I’m pretty sure a thug is a criminal, robber, or murderer by dictionary definition. But rap music has sort of twisted the meaning, but even then, 2pac and NWA would know that Fronz isn’t living the “thug life”. And even then, the rappers that Fronz is obviously taking inspiration from can make the whole gangsta/thug life thing interesting in their lyrics, but this guy just has to make it as cheesy and as white as possible (no offense to the good white rappers out there). The first section of the song Thug Life is about rolling blunts…INSTANT loss of credibility. BOOM. Just like that.

I’m done with this. About That Life is one of the worst metal albums I’ve ever heard. This album makes me very embarrassed and ashamed to have been such a big fan of Attila and their Outlawed album. Now, every time I listen to Outlawed, I’m going to be reminded of what they released in 2013. The ideals and themes that Attila have going are extremely immature and very easy to grow out of. Although I do get Attila’s style and I can get past most of the cheesiness, this is just too much. And even when I do get past enough cheese slime to see the actual music, all I see is moldy shit. The only positive moment I had was the first 15 seconds of Callout; I don’t know what it is, but I really loved that breakdown. But that’s it. About That Life gets 2/20.