It's a shame the public at large isn't exposed to the hype sheets that come with metal albums more often. A choice line from the accompanying sheet for "Bleed The Fifth" is "this record doesn't re-invent the wheel, it turns full cartwheels of innovation and intent." Now admittedly, with former Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares and Tim Yeung of Hate Eternal/Vital Remains fame onboard, Divine Heresy do have a wealth of talent at their disposal. But innovation and intent these days requires a little more than stripping the electronics from Fear Factory songs and adding in a harder death metal edge.
And realistically that's about all there is happening on "Bleed The Fifth" - though that's not necessarily a bad thing. With an assorted collection of riffs that sound like drill bits burrowing into the listeners skull, the songs readily pack a mechanical determination, heavy double kick drumming syncopation and throaty metalcore-ish vocals. But there are many ties to the past here, especially in the song structuring. However, rather than Burton C. Bell's operatic croons, Divine Heresy's Tommy Vext takes a similar clean vocal approach, only to be limited by his range.
Furthermore, rather than augment their songs with electronic atmosphere, the guitar work instead tries to screech out a few stilted harmonies that never quite capture the imagination. It's not that the band need to go the industrial route though; as the metal on hand here is quite ferocious and full of enough aural jackhammering to loosen a few bones form their sockets. No, the problem with "Bleed The Fifth" lies in that its songs rarely deviate from a set formula and much of it feels like it was written exactly the same as a Fear Factory record. The only difference is the resulting gaps and breaks were padded with deathcore filler, rather than dystopian electronics.
(3 / 5)