One of the better bands to emerge from the post-Converge metalcore explosion, Every Time I Die continue to merge hardcore punk fury with metal guitar heroics on their sixth album, Ex Lives. While the bulk of the album is filled with the kind of intense, emotionally explosive fits of musical violence that fans have come to expect, the moments where the album gets really interesting are the ones where the band takes the time to do some exploring. "Partying Is Such Sweet Sorrow" evokes the sweat-drenched rock of bands like Hot Snakes, giving listeners a respite from rigorous technicality with some a little looser while keeping the spirit of the band's sound intact. The real surprise is the closer, "Indian Giver," which finds Every Time I Die channeling the stonery sonorousness of Torche with a sprawling, ethereal jam. The most impressive part about the song, though, is how much it works in the context of the album, allowing Every Time I Die to bring Ex Lives to a droning and triumphant end with a song layered with atmosphere that offsets the punishing, breakdown-heavy assault that listeners had been the recipients of up to that point. Though these kinds of diversions might turn off fans of the band's more fiery moments, this kind of evolution shows that Every Time I Die are moving in some promising new directions.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney