Eyes Set To Kill are a metalcore band right? RIGHT? I don’t know, maybe I’ve missed something here, but fourth effort ‘White Lotus’ just sounds like an alt-metal band attempting to cater to the breakdown crowd. The album runs for 10 tracks, clocking in at barely over a half hour, but really there are only 5 proper songs here. You’ve got 2, then an interlude (why.jpg), 3 more, and then 5 (!) acoustic songs, one of which is a Nirvana cover, and another of which is an acoustic rendition of an earlier song from the album. You’ve gotta be thinking the die-hard ESTK fans are gonna be feeling rather short changed on this one.
The album is a grower, albeit from thinking it’s shit to thinking there is sweetcorn in the shit that you might be able to pick out and make a tasty snack out of. Opener ‘The Secrets Between’ is the lead-off single from the album, but it’s gonna be bothering the Flyleaf‘s rather than the Escape The Fate‘s on this one. The lazy breakdown-esque guitar doesn’t really do much in the way of build-up to the redeeming chorus, sounding quite Paramore-y in places. Second track ‘Forget’ is indeed pretty forgettable, sounding eerily similar to Flyleaf throughout without the adorable little lisp of Lacey Sturm. It sounds pretty off-kilter a lot of the time, and you just can’t help but yearn for a simple breakdown to at least give the song a little substance. Track three, ‘Stuck Underneath’ is the interlude, which isn’t really worth talking about; if they really needed an interlude by track three, maybe they should have stuck to something a little less taxing, like Lego or something.
Now starts the part of the album that is actually not all that bad. Number four is ‘Harsh’ (seriously what the fuck, this review is like writing itself for me) which sounds again like a Paramore song, which could either have the band accepted in the meek-teenage-girl demographic or shunned by the fringe community. ‘Where I Want To Be’ is definitely not listening to this album right now, but it’s another competent song that will probably satisfy the ESTK fanbase enough that they will ignore the fact that the album proper is nearly over. ‘Erasing Everything’ (I don’t even…) isn’t all that interesting either, in fact most of these ‘harsh’ songs are pretty interchangeable.
Blink, and you’ve missed the -core portion of this album. Maybe they should have released these 5 songs as an EP seeing as ‘Broken Frames’ only came out last year. The ominous piano marks the start of the acoustic part of the album, starting with ‘Doll Parts’ which could be a pretty nice little quiet song if it was followed up properly, but as it is it goes into ‘Untitled’ (I don’t really know why they couldn’t think of an 8th song-title… it’s pretty pathetic really). The two songs could be the same thing if it wasn’t for lyrical matter. Then comes the Nirvana cover, ‘Polly’, which is a pretty good song in itself, but here it’s just wankerfied by the whole ACOUSTIC EVERYTHING crowd. It’s exactly the same as you’d see at your local open mic night, day in day out. The final song is the acoustic cover of ‘Harsh’, from earlier in the album, which isn’t really needed at all.
One thing I haven’t mentioned as of yet is that Eyes Set To Kill is a predominantly female band, which I fully support, but in this case it just screams “Look at me!! I’m a girl, and I play metal!! Woo, I’m so crazy!!”. It’s been done much better before by the aforementioned Flyleaf and Paramore, and there’s really nothing that sets ESTK apart from a sub-standard version of them. It’s just obnoxious; it’s like they just think you’re gonna like them because they’re female and haven’t bothered with actually writing anything worthwhile.
Written by Martin Savage