What Will Remain?

What Will RemainMetal icons All That Remains released their ninth album, Victim of The New Disease, on Nov. 9. It took me a few weeks to listen to it, because I knew there would be tears involved.

Surely enough, I was right.

The album came only a few weeks after lead guitarist and founding member Oli Herbert was found dead at the age of 44 in a pond in his backyard on Oct. 17. The cause of death was an overdose of sleeping pills and antidepressants; neither were prescribed to him. The authorities have not ruled out foul play and the investigation is ongoing.

 Now, the fate of the band is up in the air.

The lyrics on “Disease” are spooky considering how relevant they are prior to Herbert’s death.

In the song “Everything’s Wrong,” vocalist Phil Labonte describes the denial of a departure: “I don’t want to write this ‘cause if I do it might be true/ No I can’t fight this I’m never able to get through/ I can’t deny this and I’ll be damned if it’s not you who told me…And you left so none of it was true.”

 It was meant as a love song, but takes on a new meaning with the loss of a friend.

Another peak moment is the song “Just Tell Me Something,” featuring vocals from Asking Alexandria frontman Danny Worsnop.  Worsnop compliments Labonte’s higher voice with a raspy delivery.

Victim of the New Disease is a great album, if not their best.

The band is at their most cohesive in their career.  The production was done by Daniel Laskiewicz and mixed by Josh Wilbur, no amateurs to rock and metal production.

The lyrics resonate deeper than anything else in their discography does.

Their playing has some brilliant moments where they have given their traditional formula of songwriting a rebirth.

The ten-track album features some of Herbert’s best guitar playing; melancholic acoustic intros done with beautiful fingerpicking, while also maintaining lightning solos.

As Herbert’s final work, this album is a testament of his talent that will be long enduring and an eventual classic.

IMAGE TAKEN from Loudwire