Taking on a new album review from a band that I haven’t heard of before is not something I have done yet, but I am a sucker for metalcore. I was drawn to this Columbus, Ohio five-piece like a moth to a flame… get it? (I wonder how many times they’ve heard that one before!) The other thing that caught my attention was the fact that this album had been mixed by Caleb Shomo of Beartooth and this excited me.
Now, I’m not really sure why I haven’t come across Like Moths To Flames before, I assumed it was because they were new to the scene and their existence hadn’t yet become known across the Atlantic. But after some quick research I realized this was actually LMTF’s fourth studio album and they completed some UK dates on the epic Rise Up Tour last year…so I guess I have just been living under a rock all this time. Even though I’m jumping into this one with fresh ears, I still wanted to go back and check out what I had been missing. It seems these guys are all about destroying eardrums and dramatic breakdowns, which is exactly what we would expect from a metalcore band. After hearing the previous album The Dying Things We Live For, I was super excited to see what Dark Divine had to offer.
With LMTF’s metalcore roots still heavily embedded in the foundations, Dark Divine adds some new elements bringing a whole new level to their sound. Although Chris Roetter is still assaulting eardrums with his intense screams, we hear a lot softer melodic singing which delivers a more mature and structured feel to the songs. Of course it’s still packed full of catchy choruses and impressive breakdowns that keep you on the edge of your seat.
The Intro to “New Plagues” provides a taste of the synth and atmosphere that layers the tracks throughout. The gentle sound eases you in before Roetter’s scream comes and kicks you in the face. The chorus is powerful on this one and I’m instantly hooked. The next track “Nowhere Left to Sink” was the first single released from the album. With an impressive music video to go with it, this punchy tune was a great choice to introduce Dark Divine into the world. It’s an eerie start to “Shallow Truths for Shallow Minds” before the guitar riff drags you into a furious verse. Once again, a sing along chorus opens to make this another catchy track. After some feisty breakdowns, the song comes to an abrupt end that just leaves you itching for more. With “Dark Divine” you’re instantly captivated by the sporadic vocals that mixes melodic with screaming. There’s a lot going on with this one, the guitar changes from a slow and distorted sound to punchy rolling riffs. Even with all the different layers, it still fits perfectly together without sounding over powered.
This time round, LMTF have done well to differentiate between tracks. “Even God Has a Hell” twists the style as we hear a more melodic and calm verse while the chorus brings the feistiness. Taming it even more, “Empty The Same” has a more mellow feel. Providing the opportunity to sing your heart out throughout, this is one of my favorites from the album. There’s parts in this that really remind me of the newer Bring Me The Horizon sound, which is not surprising as a lot of metalcore bands have gone down the route of introducing these synthetic layers to their tracks. These electronic swells can be heard a lot in “From the Dust Returned,” mixed with the ambient guitars and echoing vocals, this brings an atmospheric feel while the blowing screams still bring you back to earth.
With other tracks that will also blow your mind this album is jam-packed full of awesomeness. Hopefully, LMTF will come back over to the UK soon because I’m so eager to see what these guys bring to a live show. Dark Divine will be released on 3rd November, make sure you grab a copy!