Asking Alexandria are a band who have always polarised opinions since they formed in 2008. I’ve seen an equal amount of good and bad comments in regards to them as musicians and for this reason decided to go into ‘From Death To Destiny’ with an open mind, having heard none of their previous releases.
If I had been more aware of Asking Alexandria’s music then I’d probably be better prepared for the distinctly average ‘metal’ the album contains. At its best, ‘From Death To Destiny’ is generic metal-core that attempts to mix things up with electronic elements. At its worst it’s complete drivel.
The album has its moments, most prominent on ‘The Death Of Me’ and ‘White Line Fever’ but these moments of genuine quality are few and far between. The majority of ‘From Death To Destiny’ is mediocre in every sense of the word with the songs it contains sounding very similar as a result of sticking to the same formula excessively, and only breaking from it via the use of elements such as violins or small tech segments. Introductions to songs such as ‘Run Free’ and ‘The Road’ are promising but soon relent into more of the same breakdowns and weak vocals. The first half of the album is better than the second half, but still ultimately lacks quality and individuality.
In terms of vocals, ‘From Death To Destiny’ is weak, especially the cleans. The screams are by no means bad but often lose their impact as a result of the stale soundtracks they accompany. Chorus’s often aim to soar, with instrumentals doing so, but Danny Worsnop struggles to match these highs and sounds strained. The vocal intro to ‘Killing You’ is laughable, whilst ‘Moving On’ sounds like The Rasmus submitting an entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. It’s a painful listen at times, and becomes a dull one by the halfway point. Lyrics on the album are weak also, occasionally being cliche, most aparent on Break Down The Walls (‘We won’t take this, they won’t break us, we won’t stop until the world is in our hands’) and Believe, which preaches but never effects. Howard Jones’ cameo is wasted as a result of his vocals sounding edited and lacklustre, and he brings nothing to ‘Until The End’, which seems like a missed opportunity to make use of working with one of the genres biggest names.
Instrumentally, a lot of songs sound the same, following the same structure of breakdowns and chugging, repetitive guitars. Drums throughout are quite strong and one of the albums better aspects. They often give the songs their bite and impact, overshadowing the weaker instruments that surround them. Experimentation through electronics is welcome but is sometimes done purely as an attempt to add style and break the mould, often being a little unnecessary. Bar this, the album ultimately lacks imagination and creativity and sticks to what’s expected from a release in the genre. ‘From Death To Destiny’ covers no new ground in terms of sound; just treads the same until its legs fail.
‘From Death To Destiny’ isn’t necessarily a terrible album but is definitely poor, and never does enough to justify the hype surrounding it leading to its release on the 6th August. It’s generic and unimaginative, never pushing any barriers, and Asking Alexandria seem to deliver the bare minimum that is expected of them.
Rating – 4/10