Now, there are only a handful of albums that I have listened to consistently since high school. There has been a ton of music that has come and gone, but one that has always remained is As I Lay Dying’s Shadows Are Security. Now, I know that what Tim Lambesis has done outside of music is despicable and horrendous, but I look past it only in this one instance. There really aren’t any other music outputs from him that I care about at this point, but Shadows is a landmark album for metalcore.
I can honestly sing every song on this album and I don’t tire of it in the least. It seriously holds up 100%. The album opens up with “Meaning In Tragedy,” which kicks everything off in swell fashion. Definitely one of the most popular AILD tracks (hell, I’ve even got a shirt with the lyrics on it). “Confined” is one of my all time favorites. Just heavy and melodic and catchy from the start.
As we push on to the biggest hit (at least in my eyes) from this album, “The Darkest Nights,” AILD hit a fucking home run. This song is absolutely incredible and memorable. Love it. “Empty Hearts” has one of the meaner crunches on the album definitely. It’s got a strong Killswitch vibe to it while remaining AILD through and through. “Reflection” picks up the pace a bit and shows off more riffing than the chugging from the last track. This is a textbook metalcore song and it’s done extremely well.
“Repeating Yesterday” has the calmest intro on the album and when the build up pays off, it does so in spades. A nice, riff-driven mid-tempo track where Tim really got to showcase his voice. “Through Struggle” was another big hit off of this album. Love the riffing on this track. Absolutely hummable and memorable. This song also has some of the most exquisite drumming on the album in my opinion.
“The Truth Of My Perception” hammers that Killswitch “The End Of Heartache” vibe to a T for sure. Lots of chugging and angst layed out very well. Definitely a good track although not one of my favorites on the album. “Control Is Dead” is one of the shorter tracks on the album, clocking in at under three minutes. Daniel Weyandt of Zao contributes vocals to this track, making it one of my favorite team-ups in metalcore history. Daniel’s harsh, nasty, exasperated vocals complement Tim’s low scream perfectly.
“Morning Waits” is a good track on this album, but to me always felt like “The Darkest Nights” part two. The riffing is similar, the vocal delivery is similar, so it felt like a rehash. Could just be me, and this doesn’t make it a bad track whatsoever. It’s very good, just wanted to throw that out there. The final track on the album is “Illusions” and it is actually a reworked and rerecorded track from the As I Lay Dying/American Nightmare split album (originally called “Illusion”) and it’s a great track with an absurdly long intro. This track features guest vocals from Christian hardcore act No Innocent Victim’s Jason Moody. This track is also very different than anything else on the album, mainly because it wasn’t written in tandem with the rest of the album and feels like it was from a different time. Odd and satisfying all in all, though.
Yeah. Tim is a dick and a psycho, but this album absolutely holds up. Go listen to it now. I’ll wait.