Let's go ahead and get the negatives out of the way. Yes, Emmure is THE band to hate in metal and hardcore right now. Yes, many a high school linebacker is getting fired up for the game on Friday by listening to Felony. Yes, Emmure engages in ridiculousness like this and this. However, a good album is a good album. If I deviate from my criteria of judging music, then I'm being intellectually dishonest and I'm doing you a disservice. Felony is a good record.
First off, this is not a deathcore album. Maybe Emmure's older material is, I'm not familar with those records, but Felony is not. This is the evolution of doomy nu-metal with some early 2000s metalcore mixed in for good measure. Emmure plays a modern take on the classic Korn sound with an obvious Bury Your Dead influence but also with shades of bands like Sinai Beach and even Burnt by the Sun. Before I get death threats, let me say that I would be shocked if the similarity of Felony to the S/T Burnt by the Sun EP is anything other than a coincidence or an accident; but here we are.
Anyway, this record has no blastbeats. There are no songs that are particularly fast and all of the songs are stuffed to the gills with mosh/slam riffs. If Suicide Silence is the standard bearer of deathcore, then Felony doesn't fall into the category.
I can't say that I'm down with Emmure's gangsta/wigger posturing or the borderline sexism in the lyrics. Musically speaking though, Felony is a superb listening experience. Of all these young kids and new bands exploring the nu-metal sound and making it their own, Emmure has impressed me the most.
Emmure - Felony
10 months ago