Erase Me, first release since 2010, has the band shedding labels and expectations. They’ve made it clear they no longer identify as a “Christian band,” and are freeing themselves from the confines of making music that’s “ enough.” The band hits hard and heavy, lyrically and musically with Erase Me.

The frantic, but groovy “It Has to Start Somewhere” kicks off Erase Me. The pounding guitars, haunting lead, and pleading of singer Spencer Chamberlain, “I’ve lost myself, please God give me a chance…my God this is so damn useless!” sets the scene for the gritty ride you’re about to go on.

While Erase Me doesn’t seem as heavy as 2010’s O (Disambiguation), the hardcore moments are still there. “On My Teeth” is a relentless attack with driving guitars, with the vocals alternating between screaming and singing.

Chamberlain told Revolver Magazine that if had not decided to shed the labels that were weighing the band down, he would have died. His struggle with addiction and the isolation he felt when dealing with it are the major theme of Erase Me. Songs like the “Rapture,” and “ihateit,” really take you to that place.

This is a good time to mention Erase Me is the return of founding member and drummer/vocalist, Aaron Gillespie. He really shines with “On My Teeth” and “Bloodlust.” Intense beats make the songs really pound, and interesting drum fills bring even more depth to the tracks.

The middle of the album veers a bit more atmospheric, allowing keyboard player Chris Dudley to make his mark. “Wake Me” features lyrics anyone who has struggled with anxiety can relate to: “maybe this is a cry for help, maybe I should forgive myself…”

The aforementioned “Bloodlust” is dizzying, alternating between a jazzy verse, and a heavy chorus, ending with one of the heaviest guitar parts on the album before fading back.

“Sink With Me” is an angry cry to those who watch others struggle without helping. Once again Gillespie delivers a unique beat that carries the song, while Chamberlain expertly flows between screaming and singing.

By far my favorite song on Erase Me is “Hold Your Breath.” It comes at a point in the album that needs a shot of energy, and it definitely delivers. The timing of the music perfectly compliments that incredibly catchy chorus, while the verses are among the heaviest moments of the album.

Late in the game, the trippy “No Frame” smacks you with another surprise, an electronic and groovy tune, driven by a restrained delivery with vocal effects, before turning up the volume and bringing in the guitars of Tim McTague and James Smith.

Erase Me closes with the pop-punk “In Motion,” and the piano-driven “I Gave Up.” The latter is haunting and sad, declaring, “every day is a lie, every mile a mountain.”

Erase Me feels authentic, honest, and raw. It’s obvious making this album was a cathartic experience for the band. There’s something for anyone who likes hardcore, metalcore, or just heavy music.

Welcome back, guys.

Erase Me will be released on Fearless Records April 6.

headlining tour dates:

April 30 Birmingham, AL Iron City
May 1 Athens, GA Georgia Theatre
May 3 Knoxville, TN Mill and Mine
May 5 Lynchburg, VA Phase 2
May 6 Bethlehem, PA The Sands
May 8 Baltimore, MD Rams Head Live
May 9 Wallingford, CT The Dome at Oakdale
May 11 Providence, RI Fete Ballroom
May 12 Niagara Falls, NY Rapids
May 14 Des Moines, IA Wooly’s
May 15 Sauget, IL Pop’s
May 16 Ft. Wayne, IN Piere’s
May 19 Lexington, KY Manchester Music Hall
May 20 Springfield, MO Gillioz
May 22 Corpus Christi, TX Concrete Street Amphitheatre
May 23 Houston, TX White Oak Music Hall
May 24 Dallas, TX Bomb Factory
May 25 Little Rock, AR Metroplex

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About Author

This metal-loving gal grew up a huge fan of country music...but slowly made her way to the dark side thanks to the stellar musical tastes of her now-husband Mike...finding a connection to the heavy riffs and thoughtful lyrics of bands like Alter Bridge, Stone Sour, and Nothing More. When she isn't working her "day job," you'll find Carrie doing yoga, cooking some weird vegetarian meal, planning her next tattoo, or in the front row of a rock concert, singing every word.

1 Comment

  1. Daniel Weber on

    First of all, well written review and I can 100% see where you’re coming from. The following statement comes from someone who isn’t a fan of Underoath, so please take with a grain of salt.

    While I do like what I’ve heard from their upcoming release more than anything I’ve heard from them previously they still seem to have the same problem – albeit you are correct in that they are moving in the right direction. I write this putting any Christian associations to the wayside, purely in the sense of rock/metal.

    The band clearly is stuck in a 2000’s sound, and not in the best way. There were plenty of metal/hard rock bands that transcended the era and their respective genres during that period, Underoath however seem to be sticking with a middle-of-the-pack sound. I don’t find them musically dynamic, their lead singer is passable in the best of their work, and forgettable in the worst.

    Now, I’m not privileged enough to have listened to the entirety of Erase Me, but the songs I have heard are better. But not by much. They’re still hanging on to a 00’s sound, lack of lead guitar dynamics (are quality solos just – like -not a thing anymore?), and while I don’t think much of the vocals, I do enjoy the ones I heard on the tracks of Erase Me I’ve heard to previous attempts. That said… vocals may be the weakest link.

    Please understand, I’m more likely to get paid for singing in the hopes that it shuts me up, and I do not have the talent of a Spencer Chamberlain, no where close. For full disclosure, I’ve not heard anything from the band when Dallas Taylor was the lead vocalist.

    Further full disclosure – I’m not a fan of screamo type vocals. And while I prefer Chamberlain’s normal singing vocals, I still find them utterly forgettable, and as someone who believes the strength of a band is 50% frontman, all of these factors do not bode well for my initial bias on Underoath, past or present.

    I do have to say though, the fact Aaron Gillespie has reunited with the band may be its major saving grace. His drumming is absolutely spectacular on Rapture and On My Teeth.

    In conclusion, Underoath is not my cup of tea for many reasons, but due to Gillespie reuniting with the band, and (for me) this album is a clear, if still not quite electric, step up for the band.

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