CD Review: Outlands – "Grave Mind" (Tragic Hero)

On Grave Mind, Outlands have managed to create an immersive experience and have done so without having to rely on done-to-death genre gimmicks (I.E. overuse of synth, needless dance interludes, bass drops, etc.). Vocal tandem James DeBerg and Jordan Garza trade lead-throated barbs and docile clean tones amidst a barrage of churning guitars and razor sharp riffs, fueling massive hooks driven by a vocal aesthetic that sounds just as dynamic during the albums’ heaviest moments (“King Of Dust,” “Disconnected,” “Heartless At Home”) as it does when the band introduce a bit of airy and atmospheric post-hardcore into the mix (“Grave Mind,” “Everyone But Me,” “Losing Sleep”). Grave Mind is not without its pratfalls (“Eclipse” is the obligatory ballad entry, a track that seems out of place and almost unnecessary in the grand scheme of things), but overall this is a good, solid metalcore, er, ‘positive metalcore’ (a genre the band has dubbed themselves), record. In a muddied metalcore genre where every band is scratching and clawing to find a way to distinguish themselves, Grave Mind, at the very least, shows that Outlands might be able to accomplish that feat.

Grade: B
Go Download: “King Of Dust”