This is the quintessential metalcore album!
Well, maybe not, but its a pretty damn solid release.
What makes "The Opposite of December" such a great listen is the fact that when it came out several years ago, metalcore wasn't the disturbingly cliche'd beast that confronts us presently.
"The Opposite of December" showcases some very aggresive, emotional tunes, and you can't help but gain some insight into the jaded vocalists outlook on life.The guitar work is pretty specky (yes, specky), althouh probably not as diverse or even technical as their latter work (especialy on the widely maligned, but personally appreciated "You Come Before You").
If your a sucker for fast, double kicks-a-plenty, drumming, then you'll probably find something you like on this record. Take the "Nerdy" breakdown. If this doesn't get you dancing around the room I don't know what will? "Mid Air Love Message" is another good example of this.
The singing is relatively non existent, which is not a terrible thing in my books. Instead, vocalist Jeffrey Moreira, chooses to scream most of his heartfelt lyrics with such ferocity that a listener can do little but question the man's intensity (basically it doesn't seem fake or contrived, to me at least). Moreira also throws a considerable amount of spoken word verses into the mix, most notably on the classic "Artist's Rendering of Me".
Another thing that endears this release to me, is it brings the mosh bigtime. And No, not in the "Oh why don't we have a slow verse and then see how unpredictable we can be by throwing in a toughguy breakdown" way. Poison the Well, may do this on occassion (see "A Aish for Wings that Work"), but generally their breakdowns come out of nowhere, and the speed doesn't let up for the entire duration of this release.
I generally take hardcore with a grain of salt (schwing!) and this release is right up my alley. So if you like hardcore without the embarrassing 3rd grade lyricism and whiny vocals, and more importantly hardcore that makes you pump your fist and dance like the fanboy you are, then definitely check this out. A classic, what more can I say?