Metalcore Fans Debate Which Bands Have Gotten Better + Worse Over Time
Bands go through peaks and valleys, and in a recent Reddit thread, metalcore fans have debated which bands in the genre have gotten better and which have gotten worse over time.
It's an interesting discussion that offers some insight on how certain acts are viewed by the fans in their scene, with some bands even generating and equal amount of praise and critique for their career trajectory.
The thread started with one fan posing the topic, then noting that The Devil Wears Prada was a band that had "gotten better/stayed pretty true to their plateau" over the course of time, while counting Bring Me the Horizon as a band that has gotten worse, noting that "the last 2 albums have just not been it for me."
That opened the floodgates as metalcore fans started saluting those who've enjoyed an upward trajectory in recent years and calling out those who have seemingly fallen flat.
Which Bands Have Gotten Better?
While we won't hit on every acts with a positive response in the thread, certain bands seemed to elicit more enthusiastic responses. The Acacia Strain were one of those acts, with one person commenting, "Acacia Strain hit a new high in 2019 and have maintained it since." Another added, "slow decay is an insanely good record." And fans dug a little deeper, with one fan noting that "they've been steady for me since Wormwood," and another citing, "It Comes in Waves was such a turning point imo."
Rolo Tomassi got a big show of support in the comments. "Definitely Rolo Tomassi. I really enjoy their super-chaotic early mathcore, somewhat Nintendocore, stuff, but the last three albums have been as close to objectively better as it's possible to get. The chaos is still there, but it's so honed and the wedding of it to shoegaze and post-metal influences creates something quite unique," noted one fan, with several others chiming in.
"Listened to Rolo Tomassi since their EP, and watching them grow from a goofy spaz band to something progressive and beautiful was awesome," stated one person. Another added, "+1 for Rolo Tomassi. Where Myth Becomes Memory and Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It are masterpieces." And yet another fan commented, "Rolo tomassi have honed their songwriting craft to near perfection."
Counterparts fans chimed in with lots of support. After one fan noted, "counterparts is getting better and better with each release," another added, "I am obsessed with them right now." One fan suggested, "Counterparts puts out a career defining album each album. No way they can beat this. Wrong. Next album is better."
Like Moths to Flames, Knocked Loose, Silent Planet, The Chariot, Norma Jean and Poison the Well were also amongst the acts generating fan support for their continued ascending musical trajectory.
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Which Band Received the Most Mixed Results?
Though the person who posed the topic shouted out Bring Me the Horizon as an example of a band who has gotten worse, they were met with some resistance in the thread. One fan stated, "i’m on the train that bmth keeps getting better." Another added, "I think BMTH has progressed in a really positive direction. They haven’t put anything out yet that’s matched That’s The Spirit tho." Yet another stated, "Really unpopular opinion but BMTH has gone up for me, i loved everything pre Sempiternal, hated Sempiternal and then loved That’s The Spirit and everything since."
But others joined in downplaying the band's trajectory, with one person noting, "Peaked at There is A Hell for me. That album is incredible." Another added, "I do wish they took some sound back from their older stuff like 'there is a hell….”
Which Acts Were Critiqued for Getting Worse?
One of the bands that sparked the most reaction for getting worse was Parkway Drive. After they were initially brought up in the thread, one fan noted, "I think they lost a lot of their intellectual depth after Deep Blue but they keep coming back up with the occasional close." Another held nothing back stating, "Parkway’s decline has been shocking. Haven’t seen a great band’s music go to shit like that since Bullet For My Valentine post-Fever."
"It feels so easy to dunk on Parkway Drive, but man do they just suck now," offered one person. "I can acknowledge that I don't like the sound they're going for, but the even execution of it just flat-out sucks. It's just really bad euro-metal for Germans." And yet another stated, "They got worse but got bigger at the same time."
Motionless in White may be doing well on radio and on the charts, but those on the thread seemed to not be thrilled with their recent direction. "MIW has gotten so much worse. Like unlistenable." stated one person while another added, "MIW definitely got worse lol. I think Creatures is their only good album." A third person commented, "I loved Disguise but thought the latest record from MIW to be completely forgettable."
And Architects seemed to take a hit as well. "As for worse, architects. sonically its fine but lyrically sam just cannot write lyrics to save his life," stated one person, later adding "that it doesn't even remotely hold a candle to Tom's writing. He had a really good grasp of being eloquent without being over the top. I'd say the same for the overall songwriting too, to be honest." Another person noted, "For worse, it’s basic, but Architects. Early shit is AMAZING, then they peaked at Holy Hell, and from there it kinda just fell off. The music is still great, but it’s nowhere near as incredible as all the early stuff."
Other bands being critiqued negatively included Atreyu, Asking Alexandria, The Word Alive, Varials, Hands Like Houses and more.
Check out more of the discussion through the Metalcore Reddit Thread.
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Gallery Credit: John Hill, Loudwire