REVIEW: I Became The Hero – Long Forgotten


Artist: I Became The Hero
Album: Long Forgotten
Genre: Metalcore
Label: unsigned

I’m not a big fan of the cold, which of course begs the question, why did I think living in Boston was a good idea? Regardless, my time in the frigid north taught me that the best way to deal with the cold is to find something to help pass the time, a hobby, an obsession if necessary, preferably something that can be done from the comfort of my house, something to keep my mind off how horrible it is outside. This winter, that endeavor happens to be reading up on music production techniques. It’s all rather fascinating actually, learning about soundscapes, and giving different tracks space in the frequency range to prevent clashing, headroom levels, and so on. It’s all properly music nerd stuff, so naturally I love it. Watching it in practice is even more fascinating though, being able to turn on a song, and be able to hear the different techniques a producer used, and thinking about what I would have done differently, and so on. And over the past couple months that I’ve been working on this in my free time, I’ve gained a rather bothersome pet peeve: blatantly sequenced drums. They drive me nuts, and unfortunately it’s been taking over metalcore in a big way. But, with the technology available today, it’s actually more expensive, difficult, and time consuming to record acoustic drums, so I do see the benefits of sequencing them, but it still seems like a cop out to me. And unfortunately, I couldn’t stop thinking about the obviously sequenced drums on I Became The Hero’s EP, Long Forgotten. If the band themselves weren’t so impressive, I wouldn’t have made it through the album.

I can’t help but get the feeling they didn’t even try to make them sound legitimate, they were just sort of thrown together. The drum tones all sound like presets in Ableton, or whatever sequencing program of choice their producer uses, not really modified in any way. I just don’t get the feeling that any thought was put into them, not even something really simple, like enough reverb or other effect to give it a human feeling, it’s all very cold and robotic. And if that little care was given to such an integral part of the album, from the people that should care about it the most – the band themselves, and their producer, who was likely getting paid way too much to make this album – then why should I care about it? Which is really a shame, I really want to care about it, all said it’s a very good album, the rest of the recording quality is rather gritty and raw, which fits perfectly with the bands sound, these guys have an undeniable sense of emotion about them that I absolutely love. The juxtaposition created by the drums and the rest of the parts is perfectly illustrated by the song “Turning Back”, the drum fill that kicks the song off instantly ruined the drums for the rest of the album for me, but the other parts are what won me over for the rest of the album. The majority of the album has an early-2000’s emocore feel to it, only much heavier. Obviously, such a genre doesn’t exist anymore, and if it does, bands are too embarrassed to label themselves with it, but in this instance, I use it as a compliment.

The filthy screams, the reverby and full clean vocals, the almost post-hardcore guitar parts, that inject an extra degree of distortion to make it that much more metal are fantastic; I absolutely love nearly the whole package. I just wish I got a complete sense of passion from this album, the very blatant drum sequencing just gives me the impression there could have been more care put into this album. Maybe I’m thinking about this too much, but I just can’t ignore it. If the rest of the parts weren’t as fantastic as they were, this album would be ruined for me, but the fact that they’re good enough to outweigh the travesty that is the drum sampling, is really testament to how good this band actually is. Maybe I should stop being so analytical, and let the music be good just because it’s good, but being so psycho-analytical with the recording process does have it’s merits, even though I’m willing to let them slide this time since the band has proven that they’re good enough to outweigh their faults. Which is all any band can ever hope to do, really.

SCORE: 8/10

Reviewed by: Mike Hogan

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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  • Jistheason15243

    Thanks for the shitty review. Get off your ass and try and write something half as good. 
    -Jason IBTH

  • Yourbandfuckingblows

    How is an 8/10 a “shitty review” you ungrateful prick?

  • Jistheason15243

    If it was really worth 8/10 you wouldn’t have spent the entire fucking review bashing the sound of the drums and maybe focused on a different aspect or two. Seems like anyone can write a review these days.

  • Twinchevron

    Your band sucks get over it.

  • danny ibth

    i’m just going to throw my two cents in for the sake of it. the review isn’t a terrible one it just doesn’t focus on the ep, the songs, or anything other than the quality of the drums. it mentions only one track and states that if the songs weren’t talented he wouldn’t have enjoyed it. it was a run at the production and drum sounds instead of the actual ep, therefore not a very good review, but the review was appreciated nonetheless by myself although i won’t speak for the other members of the band. i would’ve loved more feedback on the songs, lyrical content, riffs, and overall feel of the album instead of just the drum tones. thanks for the 8/10 and for taking the time to write about it.

    – Danny IBTH

  • GoDoSomethingWithYourLife

    What band are you in dickhead.