I, The Breather: Truth and Purpose

This is the sophomore release from Maryland Christian metal-ers, I, the Breather. I, the Breather are part of the ever growing Sumerian records family and have made quite a name for themselves with just two albums. Combining templates set forth by bands like August Burns Red and the new guitar playing style developed by Periphery, I, the Breather have somehow been able to find their own sound in the midst of a lot of copycat bands on their first album, These Are My Sins. However, I feel this album is a bit of a drift from that.

Overall, I can’t help but feel like these guys are trying to be like For Today. Not just because they are christians, but their guitar chord patterns and tone sometimes hints at For Today.When it doesn’t though, it leans more towards Periphery. The song “Mentalist” is a blatant example of them trying to sound like Periphery playing a For Today tune. The band also started to incorporate instances of clean vocals in their music and while I don’t mind that at all, I can’t help but feel like they’re trying “borrow” ideas from Periphery or even For Today, who are starting to do that a little more based off of what I heard on the band’s new single “Fearless”.

To be fair though, these examples I picked out are very few and very far away in the grand scheme of the album as a whole and still have retained a core sound that defined them on their first album. They definitely went heavier on this record and I guess heavier and sounding like Periphery have become synonymous trends in this style of music. The band aren’t bad at all and i really enjoyed These are My Sins, but to me there’s nothing about this band that makes them stand out above the crowd. Being a part of the Sumerian label means you have to contend with the likes of Periphery, Upon a Burning Body, Stray from the Path, Asking Alexandria, Stru/tures, etc and with all those great artists, you really need to have some tricks up your sleeve that those other bands can’t figure out or else you’ll fade away or blend in with everyone else to cover up the fact that you’re fading.

It may sound like I’m really ripping this album a new one, but i’m trying not to. I did enjoy it and there were definitely some really strong points to the record. That being said though, there are some “drifting points” where if they’re not careful, they could wind being carbon copies of Periphery or For Today and I don’t want the band to do that because they definitely have the potential to make a big impact and be the next For Today. This just isn’t that album, but they’ve got time, so for now let’s just enjoy what they’ve given us so far.

Luke Helker

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