Trivium owe their success to timing. It was in the height of metalcore that they released their sophomore, and what many consider their finest album Ascendancy. It does stand out over a lot of other albums released from that era, but I think Trivium knew there is only so much you could do on a metalcore album before you realize you can’t do much different on the next one, so they changed it up on its follow up The Crusade, which for some reason people didn’t take to, thus sticking the band in a metalcore hell that would continue over the next three albums. That is until this year, when finally they’ve uprooted once again with Silence in the Snow; a drastic change from anything they’ve done thus far.
Silence in the Snow is Trivium‘s first album with absolutely no harsh screaming vocals. Even The Crusade had a couple of tracks with brief moments of guttural vocals, but not this one. Before I knew this, I wasn’t really enthused for the album. Their last effort Vengeance Falls was only a slight improvement on its predecessor In Waves, but it was clear that had Trivium continued down that path, they were going nowhere. I reluctantly listened to the title track to Silence in the Snow when it was released and couldn’t believe my ears. Strong melodies, both musically and vocally, some faint hints of alternative metal but with obvious classic metal influences stemming from Iron Maiden to Megadeth. (Though the music video is really friggin weird.) I wasn’t convinced that this wasn’t more than a trick and I would pick up the album to find every other song would be more metalcore blandness. I was proven wrong.
Blind Leading the Blind, the second track released from Silence in the Snow, has thrash metal influence to it, something that shouldn’t be new to fans as Trivium has shown a strong intelligence toward classic thrash in many of their best stuff, but this time with Blind Leading The Blind, there is such a rejuvenated spirit, sort of as though the band is excited to be playing this song because they know it will surprise listeners. As Silence in the Snow continues, we’re treated to more great metal surprises, such as one of the most alternative metal song on the album Dead and Gone, in which Matt Heafy‘s voice is practically unrecognizable thanks to his apparent desire to not sound the same on every track. The alternative metal route is only travelled seldom on Silence in the Snow, with Until The World Goes Cold being the only other song that really fit the category.I don’t even think it was Trivium’s intention to make these songs sound this way.
But really, Trivium show more classic metal influence on Silence in the Snow over anything else. The Ghost That’s Haunting You has the guitar solo of a true classic heavy metal song while Pull Me From The Void is the next catchiest song behind the title track. Rise Above The Tides and The Thing That’s Killing Me both show their own variations of high tempo heavy metal while they add a little doom metal to Beneath the Sun. They save the most intense track, Breathe In The Flames for last. Like many tracks it switches from slow pounding rhythms to fast chugging picking, but never on Silence in the Snow do they sound more serious than they do on this closing track, ending the album in the best possible way.
Trivium seem to know a thing or two about timing. I don’t think there was a better time to switch directions the way Silence in the Snow does. The last time they tried to change, they were close to the top of the heavy metal world. Those days aren’t very far behind them, but they stepped back just enough to where a rebirth was very much needed. If this new Trivium stays, then they will not only quickly climb back up the latter of modern heavy metal (a ladder in which they weren’t too far down in the first place) but they will stay at a high point for a much greater time this time around.
“Silence in the Snow” – There’s no better track to show their adjusted sound. There are so many moments where Matt Heafy could have taken the opportunity to scream like he’s unnecessarily done on so many other Trivium tracks before this, but he doesn’t. This track is the Trivium people like or love but with such a rejuvenated and new spirit.
8.5 (Out of 10)
|2.||“Silence in the Snow”||3:40|
|3.||“Blind Leading the Blind”||4:25|
|4.||“Dead and Gone”||3:46|
|5.||“The Ghost That’s Haunting You”||4:09|
|6.||“Pull Me from the Void”||3:53|
|7.||“Until the World Goes Cold”||5:21|
|8.||“Rise Above the Tides”||3:54|
|9.||“The Thing That’s Killing Me”||3:30|
|10.||“Beneath the Sun”||3:56|
|11.||“Breathe in the Flames”||5:11|