When you mention the name “Trivium”, one of two reactions occur, I’ve noticed. People either go: “Oh, their only good album was Ascendancy:” Or they go: “They’re pretty good. I listened to them when I was younger.” Of course, there are the die-hard fans as there are with any band but for some reason there’s a lot of hostility levelled at Trivium these days. Admittedly, they did change things up a little on their last album by not having any harsh vocals but they’ve done that in the past. Then when no-one was looking the band dropped the insanity that was the title track of the album. And on that note, let us begin.
Having the first track on the album as the title track is quite bold to be honest. Most bands tend to have it a few tracks in at least or have it as the last track. Trivium, however, felt no need to do that and I think their boldness has paid off. From the opening snare hits courtesy of new ‘skinsmasher’, Alex Bent, to the last bridge featuring a return of harsh vocals, this track has got near enough everything that Trivium has experimented with over the past few years.
“Beyond Oblivion” follows suit and adopts a kind of In Waves style mixed with some of the more melodic parts of the past album. Whilst this might be all well and good, it’s just a tad too long for my liking. Whether that’s because there is so much repetition in the track or simply because it’s just too long is not for me to say. “Other Worlds” however is a different kettle of fish. Having a much more ‘modern metal’ sound than the previous track, the track showcases Heafy’s much improved clean vocals. He’s hitting much higher notes than he did before which raises the issues that if they perform this live, can he hit them? That remains to be seen…
The second single from the album then plays and it feels like the track’s been lifted directly from the previous album. Ever since I first heard this track, it’s been stuck in my head and I’m not complaining really. It’s a good track and easily one of favourites of the album. “Betrayer” then comes on and I’ll be honest and say that parts of this song do sound like ‘my first metal song!’ The main problem in question is the dual tremolo picked riff with nothing underneath it. Had there been a secondary guitar part underneath it holding down the rhythm then it might have worked. It’s such a shame as the rest of the track is really good.
Second Opinion (Mosh)
I’m not going to read James’ review first as I’m curious to see whether we hit the same conclusions or not. I’m also coming into this little segment “blind” – I’m basing it purely on impressions from a first listen to this new LP. Also let it be known that In Waves is the finest thing, in my opinion, that Trivium have ever recorded.
The Sin and the Sentence continues their journey into the more melodic side of things, following on from the last couple of albums, with a mixture of harsh and clean vocals. The speed is there, as are those crazy guitar licks and catchy riffs. What Trivium seem to have done with this album is set all of their past sounds up to clash – melodic breaks smashes into crushing rhythms, harsh vocals entwine with clean, pit-destroying thrash storms segue into anthemic stadium rock choruses.
Trivium can’t decide if they’re the nice boys of heavy metal, or a dirty bunch of unwashed scoundrels – so we get both sides of this schizophrenic mix instead, resulting in a wonderfully varied collection of songs. Not just varied from one track to the next, but even within individual songs. The darker, heavier segments are some of the most brutal they’ve done in recent years and the lead guitar work puts many of their peers to shame.
However… I still prefer In Waves. It just works for me. That’s not to say that Sin… is bad. Hell, no. “Sever The Hand” is going to destroy fans if the band play it live, for instance.
A good, solid release from a very dependable, reliable band. Taking the familiar and giving it a good shake.
“The Wretchedness Inside” can almost be considered as a smashing together of the down-tuned riffs of the previous album and the vocal styles of In Waves. Thankfully, it’s not as bad as it sounds as the band work it just right and get the balance of melody and aggression just right. “Endless Nights” for some reason reminds me of “This World Can’t Tear Us Apart” mixed with “The Rising” and again it works rather well. It can almost be considered the ‘part 2’ to “The Heart from Your Hate”.
Now onto what is one of my favourite tracks on the album, “Sever The Hand”. It’s not the anthem style chorus or the verses that make this track truly stand out in my opinion. It’s the middle section where the speed ramps up and the part with the massive group vocals before the last chorus comes in. If there was a song to get a circle pit going off the new album, then this is the one. “Beauty In The Sorrow” evokes the same ballad style and has a similar vibe to “The Darkness of My Mind” off the last album with it’s semi-uplifting parts coupled with some slightly more aggressive parts.
“The Revanchist” then comes on and it’s easy to see why the band nearly named the album after this track. The track combines elements of the past three Trivium albums and condenses them into a track which is one of the best I’ve ever heard from the band. Nothing in this track sounds out of place and it naturally flows with no jarring transitions from section to section. The final track of the album, “Thrown Into The Fire”, opens with a small bass solo from Paulo before the rest of the band come in to kick things up a notch. With a bucket load of harsh vocals and some impressive guitar work from both Corey and Matt, this track serves as a worthy ending to this rather varied album.
The overwhelming feeling I’ve had in my mind across my many listens to this album is this… This is a modern take on the albums that skyrocketed Trivium to where they are today. There’s elements of every single album they’ve released present in this one and if anything, it might well be their best album to date.
Standout Tracks: The Sin And The Sentence, The Heart From Your Hate, Sever The Hand, The Revanchist, Thrown Into The Fire
The Sin And The Sentence is released on October 20th via Roadrunner Records