All That We See is a fairly new metal band here in the Twin Cities. That being said, the members of this band are veterans so it wouldn’t be a stretch for me to call them a supergroup of sorts. Fronted by Evan Gillen (formerly of Milestone *R.I.P*) on vocals, CJ Melendez (from Mithya), Edwin Melendez on guitar, and Mike Larson (from Portraits of War), All That We See is one of the many talented bands in the world of metal music here in the Twin Cities.
The album kicks off with a truly beautiful, almost translucent, opening. The cascading sounds hit you like waves that are drifting you off to a far away peaceful land. Slowly, you start to hear elements of chaos start crashing into your dream world until you are hit with a wave that attempts to dunk you underwater. Catching only gasps of air between the heavy hitting drums that interrupt the peaceful calm, you think you’re working on bracing for impact but, then you’re hit with the unexpected. A clash of brutal vocals, assaulting guitars, and terrorizing drums. Just when you realize this isn’t the dream world you once thought it was, you are whisked back into that peaceful calm with the last few seconds of the song leaving you intrigued to see what brutality this album will hold.
All That We See wastes no time reminding you that they are a metal band with the second track, “Evil Seed”. It hits you like a punch in the gut and continues to assault you with the technical and complicated guitar sweeps between the abrasive vocals of Evan Gillen and the driving drum beat being provided by drummer CJ Melendez. Throughout the true musicianship of guitarist Edwin Melendez becomes blatantly clear as his lines of notes stand out among the layers of sound. The mind numbing sweeps and patterns are more than enough to make this group stand out in a genre that seems to be completely over-ridden by bands that insist that playing faster and louder will get them further than focusing on what’s important– the music.
Throughout the album, there are glimpses back to that wonderland that All That We See transported the listener to with the opening track but don’t get used to that peaceful calm. Within seconds of the introduction of that beautiful dreamscape back into the other tracks, things change and you are catapulted back into a world of angst, aggression, and, well, metal.
My favorite track on this seven song release is “You Begin”. The song kicks in with a simple sounding beat but the tone of the drums and the tuning of the guitars make it something powerful enough to give you chills on your first listen. Echoing vocals make it sound as if you are in a chamber left alone with your thoughts of aggression that you keep bottled up. Listening to this song makes you feel like that bottle has burst and you are ready to get all of that pain and energy out. It’s a sound that makes you want to dance with your arms swinging every which way while the sweat drips from your forehead. Even sitting here at my apartment I can already envision what a pit would look like when listening to this song. Evan demands your attention with his vocals. Sure, they sound brutal and harsh but there is a sense of tenderness. “I wish I felt alive”– I mean, when that line hits in this song it’s game over. It’s a line that, although so simple, the way the vocals and the backing instrumentation highlight that line makes it absolutely everything you need to hear on your worst day. It may sound like a sinister line of words but the way it’s presented is in a perfect way to help pick you up off the ground and get yourself dusted off.
The album as a whole has a sense of progression about it. The dream world collapsing into a world of chaos and aggression slowly fades back into the peaceful fantasy during the final track ‘Ellipses’ while still hitting you with glimpses of the chaos you had just endured. Although the track ends with the All That We See’s signature guitar, bass and drum assault, the way it fades out leaves you with needing a moment of reflection on the journey you just took.
I am so excited for these boys and what this album accomplishes. It has passion, feeling, integrity, and talent. It’s a step above many of the local metal bands and it’s clear that, although still fairly new to the scene, they will surely be one of the next groups to take off and make The Twin Cities a very proud place.
Chances Of Getting A Noise Complaint While Listening To In An Apartment: 8 out of 10
At Home Moshability: 9 out of 10
My Overall Rating: 4.8 out of 5
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 9.8 out of 10
Check Out The Band Here: