Starting their humble beginnings on Christian label Facedown Records, Iowa-based metalcore five-piece For Today has made quite a name for themselves over the last seven years with the release of their blind-faith driven full lengths; most notably 2009′s “Portraits” and 2010′s “Breaker.” Once again teaming with producer Will Putney, the groups latest effort of strict religious exploration, “Immortal,” now backed by up and coming label Razor & Tie Records, was set to be just as heavy and solid as the group’s previous efforts, if not more so since it would be mixed with an addition of maturity to even out the rough edges.
That all being said, I would like to relay a message the band was quoted saying sometime over the last few years, “This has nothing to do with music and everything to do with our faith in Christ.” This depressing quote (while most likely out of context) is really all you need to know when looking to understand and listen to For Today. Knowing the bands overwhelming focus on their religion and sloppy seconds attitude toward their music, leaves me a little salty even before “Immortal” hits my ears. Either way, this record, like the others, has the band overlapping punky melodic metalcore the likes of A Plea For Purging and The Crimson Armada, which is done mostly to steel the band’s soft Jesus-freak lyrical front.
The record’s opening track “The King” as well as the later interlude break, “The Call,” both feature sound bytes from pretentious religious leaders, and don’t do any favors for the band if they were looking to attract any music listeners besides their loyal fans. For Today, while being bible regurgitators (going as far as to recite entire passages in “Fearless”), do sometimes let their instruments do the talking, where Ryan Leitru and Mike Reynolds get down to business and record some furious riffage, such as in “Foundation” and “Set Apart” which ebbs and flows with a combination of melodic guitars and galloping chugs. Tracks will pass by with a blank stare here and there (ie. “Fearless” and “Immortal”) but on the whole, “Immortal” is generally solid metalcore, with well-mastered production and enough creative fretwork to warrant a full listen — as long as you discount the fact that after listening to “Under God” you will begin to wonder if these guys are being painfully obvious on purpose or not.
“Immortal” is For Today‘s most seamless sounding album to date, free of jagged edges and loaded with pummeling chugging, intricate guitars, and plenty of Jesus-loving. That being said, this effort is likely to stay close to its subjects loyal sponsors who can sing along with the albums final track “My Confession,” “I’ve not just heard about him, I’ve heard him. I’ve not just seen evidence of him, I have seen him. My king is alive, my king is alive” and stand with a straight face while the rest of us wonder when For Today will realize they play music, not preach sermons. [Staff]
Score: 3.5 (out of 5)
Release Date: May 29th, 2012
Record Label: Razor & Tie Records
Genre: Christian Metalcore
RIYL: A Plea For Purging, The Crimson Armada, Impending Doom
1. The King
3. Stand Defiant
5. The Call
7. Open Eyes
8. Under God
9. Set Apart
10. The Only Name
11. My Confession
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