Wednesday, May 02, 2007

I am Not I am - Dear God, We Must Return Fire CD Review

Ok, let’s get this out of the way right off the bat — I am Not I am like Jesus. For some of you that’s all you’ll need to know to write this band off. You can thank me later for saving you from reading anything further about this young metalcore band. If you’re reading this far, however, then the idea of a metalcore band that sings about Christianity isn’t necessarily a turn off for you. Yes, it’s true, Christian metalcore has exploded to be extremely huge in the last couple of years. In fact, this is probably the most attention Christianity has received in the heavy music arena since the mid 90’s Christian hardcore movement. It’s even gotten to the point where there are simply too many bands trying to crowd themselves into this overplayed subgenre, which makes finding anything decent within it a hard task.

I am Not I am won’t necessarily stand out from the likes of Underoath, Norma Jean, Emery, and the other Christian metalcore heavyweights, but the odds are strong that if those bands are constantly topping your weekly playlists, then I am Not I am is definitely a band to give a listen to. Their five song EP, Dear God, We Must Return Fire, could easily be inserted into any metalcore lover’s usual rotation.

Sounding like a very rough version of Underoath with less clean vocals and a more abrasive, slightly swaggering screaming style, the band knows exactly what their target audience is and plays to it perfectly. There’s something to be said about knowing who your audience is and giving them what they want. The biggest lacking aspect to this effort is obviously the production quality. The production is very rough and amateurish, but even so the band still sounds pretty decent through it all. Some smoothing out of the rougher edges and a little better differentiation of the individual band members could have done wonders for this EP.

Just to be clear, in case it wasn’t made so before, I am Not I am aren’t reinventing the wheel here. No, instead they’ve recognized their limits, know what their target audience wants, and have created a very promising EP that should get them noticed in the circles that they want to get noticed in. Let’s hope that they can get their foothold and expand upon what they’ve managed to already establish.

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