It’s good to point out before we get into the nit and gritty of this album that in reality this isn’t a metalcore album anymore. We Came As Romans have moved so far away from their original heavy and screamy roots that bar a couple of tracks throughout, including first single ‘Regenerate’, that it isn’t fair to compare it to other metalcore albums. Still, this doesn’t mean it can’t become something different and be a good alternative rock album instead.
As has already been pointed out, We Came As Roman’s new album leans heavily towards alternative rock territory, including some almost synth sounds, and including pop like catchy chorus’. The album seems to have three types of tracks. You still have the heavier tracks scattered throughout, the likes of ‘Regenerate’ hark back to the classic days of the bands, back to the likes of ‘Plant A Seed’. And ‘Tear It Down’ is another example of how they can still incorporate heavier sounds. Secondly you have the “transition” tracks where it incorporates the heavier tones, yet includes the pop like chorus’ like ‘Blur’, which keeps the heavier growls of vocalist Dave Stephens, but also incorporates the more melodic tones of Kyle Pavone. The final type of track that you have is the all out melodic tracks, those that really keep an almost pop heart; ‘Savior Of The Week’ is the best example of this.
These more pop tracks could feel quite jarring and really out of place if we hadn’t already been introduced to the more melodic tones throughout the album, and more importantly during their last album Tracing Back Roots, which was praised for pairing both the clean and hardcore vocals fantastically. For a lot of classic We Came As Romans fans, this change may be a bit too far towards the pop and melodic sounds, and might have preferred an album full of tracks like ‘Regenerate’. If they were still classed as a metalcore band, this album would be a horrible departure, but Romans should really be known as an alternative rock band these days, especially with the release of this new self-titled album. There is still a great amount of heavier vibes throughout, and it will inevitably put off a large number of people, but will ultimately win over a whole new fan base. The big problem comes live when they have to tackle with performing their new sound and their heavier metalcore past during the same show.
Given what they have previously released there is always that pang of disappointment when you first hear the album, and sadly some of the more melodic tracks can drift into the realm of been there, heard that. There’s nothing inherently wrong with them, and there are some fantastic tracks throughout, but overall the entire thing just falls a bit flat.