To This Day

Chapter 1: Between the Bridges

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The debut release from upstate New York alternative metal quartet To This Day is a brooding effort, deeply rooted in the band's straight-edge lifestyle. Chapter 1: Between the Bridges is a solid first album from a group that's only been together for two years. The release is relentless and uncompromising, a full-on aural assault from start to finish. In true hardcore fashion, the vocals are completely unintelligible, though well-delivered -- think something similar to the dark lord's growl, but occasionally more melodious. The provocative, often hostile lyrics are printed in the album's liner notes, giving them somewhat of a spotlight -- like "Spelunking" when singer DJ's vicious vocals serve as a release of angst: "I want to rip out your heart and replace with mine/so you know how I feel/maybe then you'll know that this feeling isn't something you fake/this is real." The band's harsh sound is driven by ruthless drums and unremitting double bass chops. Unfortunately, the songs hardly differ from one to the next -- but constant breakdowns keep things interesting. One of the standouts on Chapter 1: Between the Bridges is "Legend." Starting out with bass, drums and a ringing guitar, To This Day's musicianship is at its best. The band isn't really doing anything "new" per se, but fans of hardcore will be able to appreciate the band's obvious talent and with extensive touring, Chapter 1: Between the Bridges will more than likely be followed by a chapter two.

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