Vicious World is the new album from American Christian metalcore group, MyChildren MyBride. The band formed in 2004 in Alabama while still in school. Many line up changes happened over the coming years as the band toured extensively while trying to build a fan base. They have released three albums, prior to Vicious World, while signed to Solid State Records.
MyChildren MyBride joined Entertainment One/GoodFight Music in 2014 and started work on their fourth album. That album, Vicious World, was released on the thirteenth of October.
MyChildren MyBride are the core duo of Matthew Hastings on vocals and Robert Bloomfield on rhythm guitar and backing vocals. Mathew is the founding vocalist and Robert is the next longest serving member. They are the only two members to have featured together on every single MyChildren MyBride recording. Newer members make up the rest of the band. Cory Johnson is the lead guitarist and Nelson Flores is the bassist. Finally, Mathis Arnell is the drummer.
Vicious World had 12 tracks on it in total and is around 42 minutes in length. I must admit to being a little nervy going in to this one. Metalcore is far from my favourite genre, despite there being a couple bands I really like such as While She Sleeps and Within the Ruins. Must be a “W” thing? Add Christian into the term and I am even more concerned.
You have to try these things though right? Well, I tried and I am very glad that I did because it is a brilliant album. Vicious World manages to blend very heavy riffs and breakdowns with clever, melodic touches and atmospheric effects. The vocals are sublime and probably my favourite thing on the album. Hasting’s hard and vicious growls are powerful while Bloomfield’s cleans are packed full of feeling. The clever thing about them though is that most of the singing on this album is done together – harsh and clean at the same time. Sometimes the harsh vocals are at the forefront with backing from the cleans and sometimes it is the other way round. I love the sound.
You get a bit of everything on Vicious World. Songs like the album opener, XeN0, pack a heavy punch starting with a ringing guitar line that leads into a crunching riff. The vocals are harsh and heavy and hook you in but then, as the song advances cleaner vocals join in. The riff stays heavy and adds a deep bass line. There is a bit of echo and it feels almost Gojira like before suddenly smashing back into the heavy vocals and riff. Act I: Elysium 77 has a mellow start that builds into really heavy vocals and a distorted sound. There is a mix of vocals styles again but you also get the brilliant sound of clean singing backed by harsh vocals that switch suddenly to harsh vocals backed by cleans.
There is so much to find on this album – so much creativity. Songs like THORNS build gently before becoming one long breakdown with pounding drums and vicious vocals. Act II: Sonar moves between atmospheric clean singing and a crunchy riff with heavy vocals. It is a catchy song and one of the more “pure” metalcore tracks on the album. There is even a song called KevlAr (not a misspelling) which the band have accurately described as “the bastard love child of Marilyn Manson”. In a good way – it is a very good song and just adds a little dash of something else different on the album for you to experience
The only track I don’t have a lot of love for is The Fountain which is an instrumental made up of a drum and bass style rhythm and effects. It splits the album so I can see the point of it but for me it is just an irritating interruption in an album of brilliance. Thankfully it isn’t around for long and we get back to tracks like CICVDVS which brings more of the double vocals as it moves through powerful rhythms and intricate guitar lines. You get extremely heavy riffs on tracks like Act IV: The Laughing Coffin which just powerfully hits home and pulls you in on an emotional level.
The album closes on Guardian XIII which is brutal in the intro with huge roars, a bassy riff and an intricate guitar lead. It builds in speed and then explodes in an array of backed roars and drum blasts before slowing to just a guitar line and then bang, back in with a brilliant catchy chorus. It is a phenomenal song and the perfect song to end the album on.
The album is mixed and mastered to perfection sounding modern and fresh but also unpolished and real. The songs themselves are structured brilliantly and each take you on a journey of discovery. I love the sound, love the vocals and love how MyChildren MyBride are not happy to just push out “another metalcore album”. Instead they have pushed themselves hard and produced an album that should define their career to date, inspire countless others and advance the metalcore genre to new heights. For all you young metalcore bands wanting to start recording? This is how you do it.
Vicious World is available to buy now over at GoodFight here. There are some nice packages available too. You can also pick up this album, and more from the band, at the links below. Check the band out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to keep up to date with news from the band. Be sure to give them a like and a follow while you are there.
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Vicious World by MyChildren MyBride (eOne/GoodFight Music)
The Final Score - 9.5/10