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By: Scott Turney
Crossfaith are a five piece metalcore band out of Osaka, Japan and ‘Xeno’ is their first album on Razor & Tie. Crossfaith are known for blending the fine line between metal and electronics very well, which is evident on their previous three albums. Crossfaith continue this masterful blending on their newest album ‘Xeno’. ‘Xeno’ starts off with ‘System X’ an intro track full of synths and violins and high energy which grow louder and stronger until finally a breakdown hits and the next song, (and title track) ‘Xeno’ begins. We are then introduced to vocalist Kenta Koie and his monstrous vocals which have only improved since Crossfaith’s last album Apocalyze. This is especially evident when he screams “Give me pain, lead me to truth. Give me pain, lead me to reason!” Kenta then follows that up with some clean singing.
Crossfaith continues with ‘Raise Your Voice’ which uses less electronics at first, and has a more metalcore sound. The song itself is anthem like in nature, but when the synths get added it takes the song to a whole other level. Crossfaith perfectly blends heavy metalcore sounds with incredible synths in songs like ‘Devil’s Party’, ‘Dystopia’ and ‘Vanguard’. Also included on the album are two songs with guest vocalists. The first is ‘Ghost in the Mirror’ featuring Caleb Shomo from Beartooth, and the second is ‘Wildfire’ featuring Benji Webbe from Skindred. The latter song ‘Wildfire’ is more so a collaboration of both Crossfaith and Skindred, as the song balances both band’s unique sounds.
Kenta Koie’s clean vocals really shine on the surprise slower track ‘Tears Fall’. It’s a nice break from all the hard hitting synth songs. The song also includes a nice guitar solo which really brings the song together. ‘Calm The Storm’ is another song that showcases Kenta’s great clean singing abilities when he sings “My heart still beats. Watching everything around me crushing down, is it the ending?” The twelfth song on the album is an instrumental track called ‘Astral Heaven’ which sounds like it came straight out of a video game. It’s a nice change, but at five minutes long the song is just a tad long.
Crossfaith’s ‘Xeno’ is a fun album to listen to for any fan. From heavy hitting songs like ‘Dystopia’ and ‘Vanguard’ to slower songs like ‘Tears Fall’ and ‘Calm The Storm’ the album hits both ends of the spectrum and more. The collaboration song ‘Wildfire’ is the most unique song off the album. ‘Xeno’ has songs that are well crafted, but a lot of the songs sound very similar when the album is replayed over and over again. Crossfaith’s instrumental song ‘Astral Heaven’ was a nice change, but it is also extensively long. However, for experimenting with new sounds and bringing forth their best work to date ‘Xeno’ receives 4 out of 5 stars.
POP DEFLATORS RECOMMENDS: “Devils Party”