Pros-Atmospheric music mixing a range of instruments
Cons-Too short for the average metal head buyer
-Interludes are not really necessary, and feel like fillers.
The Breathing Process - In Waking: Divinity - 2008 Siege Of Amida Records
1. The Hunter (Intro)
2. In Waking: Divinity
3. Lament Configuration
4. Blessed, Be Thine Martyr
5. Pandoras Rebirth
7. The Harvesting
9. Legions Prayer
10. Dear Antigone
12. The Treasonist (Bonus Track)
The Breathing Process' first album In Waking: Divinity is a very solid effort on behalf of the Connecticut based deathcore band. I initially stumbled upon their music while searching through Myspace for some new music. The Breathing Process had an aggression in their music that I was not used too at the time (considering I primarily listened to indie rock type of music). As I listened further I began to notice subtle melodies played on the synths/piano. I was intrigued by how such an aggressive form of music, filled with double bass blast beats and a "wall of sound" from the guitars, was able to contain little nods to classical music and an atmosphere that is often difficult to create without being overbearing. Often the genre of deathcore gets a bad rep from musical elitists who enjoy "real" heavy metal sub-genres (such as black metal). The Breathing Process is a fresh breath of air in the deathcore genre (which is so swamped with mediocrity).
The album itself is very impressive, though it only clocks in at just over 30 minutes. That is not that bad, however I do not personally by albums (at full price) when they are less than 45 minutes. I desire both quality and quantity. You may be asking yourself, "But this album is 12 songs long!" What is unfortunate is that 4 of these songs are brief interludes (for better and for worse). While they are relatively enjoyable interludes, they just serve no real purpose. They are not necessary, is what I am saying.
The interludes aside, the other songs on the album are what made this album worth buying for me. "Dear Antigone" is easily the best song on the album as far as I am concerned, simply because it meshes extreme metal with melody so perfectly. There is some sweep picking and a quick little outro solo that grabbed my attention and begged for another listen. Additionally, a keyboard interlude into a rush of blast beats was just a perfect atmosphere. The "core" aspect of deathcore certainly shows itself on the song "Prey" (which is another of my favorites) and "The Treasonist" do to the usage of clean singing. I felt that these additional vocals cut through the monotony that screaming vocals can often invoke in a listener. That said, the vocalist has a very unique scream that always amuses me. His range on this album tends to stay in the middle area, however there are occasions where he hits higher notes and low, growl like notes. Musically, breakdowns are found in almost all of the songs (as they are one defining aspect of deathcore in general). For those who are unaware, a breakdown is a part of a song where all of the instruments drop significantly in tempo (often in a quick fashion). Fortunately, they are very tasteful and seem to serve more of a purpose within the context of the songs. I just wish a band would one day write a more technical breakdown, instead of relying on the tried and true basic breakdown technique.
The physical album is also a beauty to look at. The album art intrigued me, to say the least. I do buy albums for both aesthetic reasons as well as for the musical content. In fact, I have frequently passed on buying music from good bands who have poor artwork and lyrical content. The lyrics on this album are equally intriguing, though I can not fully understand them. I am led to believe that they are contributing to a higher "concept" in the form of a concept album, however that is really just my speculation.