There are a lot of homogenous albums out there, but every so often an album drops that feels as though the band wanted to make a mixtape, and just figured it'd be easier to write the songs rather than dig through their record collection. This is totally the case with A War You Cannot Win, the sixth album from the subgenre-hopping All That Remains, which finds the band delivering melody and menace in equal measure. For a less-experience band, this kind of jack-of-all-trades metal might come across as scattered, hinting at an inability to find themselves as a band. What makes All That Remains special is that they've managed to make not having a niche their specialty, a rarity in a genre as stratified as heavy metal. As confident as ever, the band smoothly shifts from the driving, metalcore thrash of opening tracks "Down Thru the Ages" and You Can't Fill My Shadow" into the more anthemic, arena ready-rock of "Stand Up" without missing a beat. Like a magician pulling the table cloth out from under the table settings, the band pulls off these shifts in tone without disturbing the balance of the album, making the changes something that the listener is aware of, but never shocked by. By casting such a wide net with their sound, A War You Cannot Win might not satisfy most listeners all the way through, but just about anyone approaching the album will find something on here to like. While this might be a bit jarring to newcomers checking out the album based on one of its singles, it's a trait that fans of the band are used to (and are undoubtedly pretty keen on).
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney