There is no questioning the fact Emmure is the poster band for internet taunts, and less than kind words on social media. Other than Five Finger Death Punch this band actually embraces it as part of their identity. Emmure has been the subject of controversy since their start in 2003, especially frontman Fankie Palmeri, whose image and antics have made him hated by some, and revered by others. Not to mention his short lived and very in your face and controversial clothing line “Cold Soul”. It is no surprise that their latest full length album Eternal Enemies is fueled by angry lyrics and Emmure’s typical heavy riffs.
Emmure’s lack of technical complexity persist on this album as the opening track title “(Untitled)” starts off with that squeaky guitar effect/riff that can be found on several other Emmure songs then bounces right into the their usual sound. From the get go, you can tell that the band put every bit of emotion they have into this album and were not afraid to pour it all out. The name Eternal Enemiesbecomes apparent immediately from the start of the lyrics as Frankie belts out “I have too much fun killing everyone”. It is clear there are some demons within or perhaps with others that the band expresses through the music on this album.
The second track of the album titled “Nemesis” gives you that two step breakdown groove found in several other their previous hit songs like “Solar Flare Homicide” and “10 Signs You Should Leave”. This writer got a chance to see this song performed when Emmure headlined the Mosh Lives Tour, and it definitely was received well by the crowd. The song contains the sound that brings people to Emmure’s music, and definitely has shock value. As the album goes on, it becomes even more obvious that this record is a platform for Palmeri’s anguish and vengeance toward those who have had less than loving words to say about him. In the song “Most Hated,” Palmeri leaves nothing to interpretation as he tells those who wanted to see him fail to “eat dick” while adding a new melodic quality to the chorus and some electronic effects.
We start to hear the band incorporate some more melodic textures and some guitar riffs in songs like “Grave Markings” and “Girls Don’t Like Boys, Girls Like 40’s and Blunts” which makes you wonder if Emmure could actually maybe venture further into the melodic style in a future album. The band also does a little messing around with the punk/screamo genre with track “We Were Just Kids” where Palmeri digs deep into his emotional feelings.
Most of the album sticks Emmure’s standard of heavy beating 3 fret riffs and double bass patterns, but to the band’s musical credit they start to venture a little further beyond what is now expected on a few tracks. But why should they change now? The riffs of pure heaviness, nu metal electronic drops, and Frankie’s rap to scream combo is just part of game that have allowed bands like Emmure and Atilla to stand out. If you’re a Korn or Limp Bizkit fan “Hitomi’s Shinobi“ pays tribute to porn star Hitomi Tanaka and will give you that new sound in nu-metal you have been looking for.
Overall, Eternal Enemies features the same theme, variations, and angry character displayed in every Emmure album. But who can blame them? That is their style and it is actually quite nice to see them address some of the hate the band receives day in and day out. It is clear the focus of this album was to let the anger that has been built up within the band all flow out. With that said, this 15 track album contains the same catchiness that Emmure was able to pull off with their previous mundane deathcore riffs and rap to screaming angry vocals. If you are looking for steadfast longevity, look into Emmure’s life with the occasional curveball, give this album a listen. Regardless of controversial Frankie Palmeri and Emmure can be, you just can’t seem to ignore them. I’m sure the band will make metal headlines again on the upcoming 2014 Mayhem Festival.