In hardcore nothing new seems to be a trend. Nothing new, nothing lost, nothing gained. If you’re a fan, you’re still a fan. If you’re not, no need to reapply. Oh Sleeper’s sophomore effort isn’t anything new to the band or the genre. If anything I find Son of the Morning less compelling than When I Am God.
Musically Son of the Morning is your standard metalcore record: Screamed verses, clean sung choruses, triggered replaced drums. This album represents a problem in hardcore. The album is so tight and on point perfect to the formula we’ve heard far too many times in the last 10 years that it doesn’t showcase, what is honestly, good songwriting and a good record. You could come up with a playlist of 24 metalcore bands hit random and you’d never be able to tell the difference. Every drum hit and sound is exactly the same on hardcore records across the board. (Maybe being a drummer and recording engineer I’m being too hard and judgmental on this)
As for an album in a scene filled with kids who wear girls pants and shop at Hot Topic, Oh Sleeper’s Son of the Morning should not disappoint their fan base. The album does lose some of the atmospheric sound that made me take note of When I Am God but that’s a minor note on what is our basic metalcore record.
The record feels very similar to Underoath’s Lost in the Sound of Separation, which is probably a pretty good jumping place for people who haven’t heard Oh Sleeper before. The clean vocals aren’t as nice as Underoath or Killswitch and the melody isn’t as strong but I don’t think that’s the point. The record is heavy. It’s not melodic hardcore or screamo, it’s a metalcore record from start to finish, and that’s fine.
I do like the record. Not as much as When I Am God but it’s good. I’d put it in my car while driving or in the cd player while running. There’s no bad song on the album… There’s just also nothing that jumps out at you. It’s heavy and I like heavy… it’s just nothing new or original.
On Son of the Morning the theme is If It’s Not Broke, Don’t Fix it.