Arsis has, yet again, released a strong new album. This latest full-length, Unwelcome, adds to the technical goodness that Arsis is best known for. Any Arsis fans, including me, know Arsis for their ability to remain brutal while staying intricate in their composition. These are the reasons why Arsis has truly continued to be singular. And this new release is no exception. All of the elements that distinguish Arsis exist on this newest release, while also venturing into new paths.
One of the main aspects I noticed was how much more melodic this album is as opposed to their previous releases. Catchier riffs are used to embellish the ruthlessness of the rest of the songwriting. It’s definitely catchier than any of their previous releases, even more so than their 2010 release Starve for the Devil, which is where I started noticing their progression in sound. A surprising factor I also noticed was how heavier the guitars in particular were. One of the aspects that attracted me to Arsis in the first place was how the guitars were tuned high and the playing style of vocalist/guitarist James Malone and then guitarist Ryan Knight were swifter than just about anything I heard. Though Malone and now guitarist Brandon Ellis still play in that rapid style, the sound is much more aggressive. It’s awesome to hear Arsis experimenting with multiple factors, while also remaining true to their original ways.
There are several tracks that stood out to me. “Handbook for the Recently Deceased” has one of the sickest openings on the album, with the impressive blasting from drummer Shawn Priest combined with the mixed guitar stylings of Malone and Ellis. Out of all of the tracks, “Let me be the One” sounds the most like old Arsis. The composition is more progressive while having Malone’s signature piercing vocals. The album opens with “Unwelcome” which is by far one of the catchiest tracks on the album. The chorus just sticks with you, and makes you anticipate what’s coming next. And the closing track is “Scornstar,” is by far the most perplexing and entrapping tracks off of the album.
Above all, I can’t recommend Unwelcome highly enough. Arsis has proved once again they’re capable of releasing a vigorous and exceptional album. Arsis will surely conquer with this release. Fans will not be left unsatisfied. Listening to this album makes me want to go to a live show; I can only imagine the energy tracks such as “Scornstar” will prevail. And to know that the progression Arsis obtained will only ameliorate makes me appreciate this album that much more.
1. Unwelcome 3:41
2. Carve My Cross 4:14
3. Handbook for the Recently Deceased 3:48
4. Choking on Sand 3:18
5. Let me be the One 3:106. Sunglasses at Night (Cover) 3:58
7. Martyred or Mourning 4:09
8. No One Lies to the Dead 4:05
9. I Share in Shame 3:36
10. Scornstar 3:38
Genre: Extreme Metal
Playing Time: 35 minutes and 77 seconds
James Malone – vocals/guitar
Brandon Ellis – GuitarNoah Martin – Bass
Shawn Priest – Drums