Album Review: For A Life Unburdened: ‘Contempt/Clarity’


The thing I love about metal is there are countless subdivisions and different feels inside the genre.  There really is something for everyone.  For every minor, sober, crushing album there is a vibrant, melodic, harmony.  There are bands that scream every word, bands that sing with radiant clean vocals, and everything in between.  There is fast, in your face trash metal and slow-paced, heavy doom metal.  But metalcore has always been my favorite, and probably always will be.

Say what you will, but metalcore bands rock.  From the harmonies, clean vocals, and group vocals, the heavy screams, the melodic guitar riffs, and the heavy double bass it is the class of the genre.

I had the opportunity this week to listen to the new album Contempt/Clarity from Alberta metalcore band For a Life Unburdened and was really excited to dig in.  The album is set to drop on August 3rd, and if you feel the way I do about metalcore, you won’t want to miss it. This album has everything I love about the genre on one record and is a fun album that’s easy to listen to from cover to cover.

The positives of this album are too much to list in one place, without sounding redundant.  Early in the record, the tone is set with “Adamantium” which showcases killer harmonies and riffs throughout the tune. It has a perfect blend of screaming and melodic vocals.  “Who You Think I Am” has an EPIC breakdown which rivals the best I have heard.  Not only is the breakdown heavy, but it is a spine chilling transition vocally, with the declaration “I will fuck-ing break”.

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“Face in Hell” gets off to a feverish start and uses a heavy double bass beat.  This track highlights amazing group vocals, but also has a really cool riff that highlights the voice, bass, guitar, and drums in sync with each other.

The single on the record, “Wrong”, is a solid track that highlights some really cool stop beats and vocal/drum synchronization.  “Waiting for Us to Die” uses a lot of stop beats as well, but also uses long held chords from the guitar and bass to create a transition from a heavy beginning, to a slight back off and build to a strong, heavy end.

“Not Forever” may have the most catchy hook on the album.  It starts heavy, engages, and has an energetic anthem-like chorus.  My favorite track on the album is actually the closer, “Clarity”.  It is a solid combination of heavy and clean vocals with strong riffs throughout and another really catchy chorus that had me singing along by the end.  If you are going to listen to just one song, check this one out.  It is a summation of the entire album, like everything preceding was leading up to the end. This song has another epic breakdown that begins with fingerpicking on the guitar and builds for one last heavy run before the album fades to black with a piano/synth outro.

For a Life Unburdened is destined for big things.  This album is incredible and is sure to put the band on the map.  The album drops in 2 weeks and I strongly suggest taking the time to listen through on day one.  You won’t regret it.  In the meantime, check out their single “Wrong”, available now on iTunes to get a taste of what these guys are all about!


TAGS: For a Life Unburdened

Twitter: @JboneBass

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