Winds of Plague are well-known for their approach to the deathcore genre. The 6-piece have quite a busy sound – the inclusion of a keyboardist adds depth to the melodic section, and the guitarists combine both modern deathcore-esque breakdowns and some more old-school, hardcore inspired riffage. The result is a very distinct sound, and their latest release is an attempt to build upon it.
Unfortunately, Resistance is a sign that Winds of Plague have begun exhausting their stock of songwriting ideas. The album boasts a confident delivery, but it avoids risks and just feels kind of flat when compared to previous releases.
The production on Resistance is undeniably powerful, but the repetitive nature of the album causes all the songs to blend into one underwhelming pile of recycled breakdowns and predictable harmonies. The keyboard melodies fail to stand out and just sit behind the other instruments on the mix, overshadowed by the louder instruments. There are a couple of cool leads and riffs from the guitar duo, but not a single track stands out enough to be listed as a good example. You can rely on some cool harmonies to show up here and there, but they aren’t nearly as memorable or interesting as they were on 2008’s Decimate The Weak. The elements are all there but the punch fails to land.
So what’s holding this record back?
Perhaps the band’s songwriting formula is just getting tired. The album is 100% void of surprises. Every single track has an awkwardly similar structure to the last, so while they aren’t necessarily bad, not a single one will leap out at you and demand to be played again. Each one is too heavily marred by repetition to stand out from the rest… Despite the fact there are 10 of them. It’s consistent, but not in a positive way.
Amongst the uneasy sea of mediocrity that is this record, there are a small handful of better moments to be found. “Sewer Mouth” features an awesome guest vocal spot from (The Acacia Strain’s) Vincent Bennet that totally blitzes Johnathan Cooke’s performance by comparison. It’s a shame that the rest of the song is just a formulaic breakdown-ridden deathcore track not unlike those that surround it.
There are some great riffs dotted across Resistance too, but they’re quickly drowned out in favour of yet another earth-shattering breakdown we’ve already heard 500 times. It’s not all bad, but Resistance gets dry pretty fast.