Asking Alexandria

Reckless & Relentless

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

The second full-length album by U.K.-based metalcore outfit Asking Alexandria features all their established trademarks, particularly their blend of downtuned, thrashy riffing and outbursts of dancefloor-friendly synth and drum machine, as well as their (typical for the screamo/metalcore genre) multiple vocal styles: harsh, hoarse screams and guttural death metal growls alternate with choirboy crooning on the choruses. Some of the songs are moderately catchy, particularly "A Lesson Never Learned," "The Match," and "Someone, Somewhere," the latter of which features no "extreme" vocals at all and seems like a straight-up bid for rock radio. Other tracks are built of nothing but chugga-chugga riffs and ferocious roars, guaranteed to thrill the teenagers who are the band's primary audience. What separates Asking Alexandria from most of their peers is an awareness of classic rock & roll dynamics -- some of the riffs they write are straightforward updates of Guns N' Roses or Skid Row (two of whose songs they covered on their Life Gone Wild EP), and they're as interested in getting listeners singing along as moshing.

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