Waterdown - All Riot (Cover Artwork)


All Riot (2006)


From what I originally heard of Germany's Waterdown, I wasn't impressed. The shouting was horrendous and the melodies were watered down. So when I heard they were releasing All Riot, I didn't pay any interest. However, after I read a review of the CD and noted some interesting references (Atreyu, Scorpions) I decided to take a look.

The first thing that strikes me is the new vocalist, Michael Janczak. Janczak's shouted vocals sound like a mix of Atreyu's Alex Varkatzas and Brandon Saller. It's only fitting since "My Hopelessness and Me" starts off with a carbon copy drum line and dueling guitars of Atreyu's "Right Side of the Bed," until the ending, which features a shallow breakdown more reminiscent of a band like Shattered Realm. As for the singing, it would sound easily at place if you heard it around the choruses of any ‘modern rock' song on your local radio station.

Waterdown at times does start to shine with some intriguing vocals that switch back and forth around some of the songs, and musically it isn't exactly bad, but it's been done before. But what stops Waterdown from being a reasonable band is the fact they still haven't completely ditched their hardcore roots. In almost every song the listener is forced to listen through the same breakdown you've heard hundreds of times by every other band that pronounces theirselves as hardcore.

So while All Riot isn't a complete letdown, and is a huge improvement over their early work, it still doesn't have enough going for it. It shows off a little creativity and originality at select moments, but it feels too similar to many other bands and needs some re-working. With another improvement like this, I could see this band going places.