REVIEW: Your Chance To Die – Suscitatio Somnus
Band: Your Chance To Die
Album: Suscitatio Somnus
Label: Red Cord Records
Genre: Christian melodeathcore (new genre name!)
Occasionally I’ll come across a band that seem stuck in a limbo when it comes to identity, caught between two styles but never striking upon common ground. Your Chance To Die, a Christian metal band out of South Carolina, seem in just that predicament. Swinging between deathcore to tech-melodeath, the only apparent constant is frontwoman Missy and her vociferous and relentless lyrical growls on their sophomore release, Suscitatio Somnus.
After the requisite creepy cinematic intro, the album gets off to a mediocre start with “Divine Pestilence”, more leaning towards deathcore chug. Well, at least until the halfway point when melody takes over, and a cool solo from Coca Avila recalls The Faceless, supplemented by Crouch on rhythm guitar. Crawley’s bass and drummer Todd make for a strong rhythmic duo, shifting easily between the faster death metal and slower deathcore parts. “Libations Of Blood” starts off better, also including some guitar noodling, coated with an oldschool feel, and “Annuit Coeptis” is where the momentum really gets going, sporting no less than 3 solos and some interesting lyrics to boot.
Neatly sidestepping any comparisons to Arch Enemy’s Gossow, growler Missy tends to stick to her lower range of demonic growls which, when juxtaposed with the Christian-inspired lyrics, ironically suit them. Some passages are very well-written, if awkwardly-phrased (“When an innocent child puts a gun to his head/There’s something wrong with both of you”), and have more in common with Light This City and Walls Of Jericho. The most disturbing track, “Measure Of Iniquity” is also one of the hardest-hitting, dealing with child prostitution and our culpability through inaction. However, there are some overwhelming moments with simultaneous soloing and lyrics which would have worked better instrumentally.
After multiple spins, Suscitatio Somnus does become a little dragging and turn into a “death metal sermon”, given there is little in terms of chorus structure. The breakdowns are a bit predictable, and the drum production would benefit from tightening. That said, the band have clearly spent time on integrating the various sections, and the solos in particular are great, culminating in a synth-drenched interlude entitled “Nigun Atardecer Es Igual” (No Sunset Is Equal) which sounds akin to a Satriani or Vai track, dividing the album neatly in half. The band’s first single, “Requiem For The Blessed Damned” also showcases experimenting in the form of keyboards and higher-pitched screams, and the closer “Verdict For The Gods” has a Spanish spoken word section before the strong finale.
As an insight a band’s history, Suscitatio Somnus is an interesting snapshot of the transitory period between deathcore roots and fully fledged death metal, and the Christian element puts on a different spin from the usual topics. Your Chance To Die’s intentions are fairly clear that they want to move on from these roots, but in terms of a merging between the two, they’ve done a satisfying job. The next album will certainly be one to watch when it emerges.
N.B. The video features an intro and outro not present on the album.