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Walls of Jericho - No One Can Save You From Yourself

Walls of Jericho - CD Review
No One Can Save You From Yourself

Walls of Jericho - No One Can Save You From Yourself


CD Info
Napalm Records
13 Tracks
English Lyrics

Walls of Jericho, the Hardcore/Metal/Rock Band from Detroit, Michigan, after a hiatus of several years due to personal projects, and several members having children, including the vocalist’s first child, are set to release No One Can Save You From Yourself, their fifth full length album. The band has not lost any of their signature sound nor their musicality. This album is full of driving rhythms, nice guitar riffs, and the infamous growling female voice that rivals many male growlers. The energy is quite apparent here just like the band’s live performances. An added feature of No One Can Save You From Yourself is that many of songs are the result of various personal experiences and projects of the individual members.

Walls of Jericho, as a band, has been around since 1998, the result of the demise of two other bands at that time which were Earthmover and Universal Stomp. From the band Earthmover, came guitarist Mike Hasty and the original drummer, Wes Keely. Bassist Aaron Ruby joined from the band Universal Stomp. Candace Kucsulain auditioned and was accepted as their vocalist and Chris Rawson joined as another guitarist. The band had a two year hiatus 2001-2003 as they searched for another drummer to replace Wes and pursued personal projects. Derek Grant and Alexei Rodriguez both filled in as drummers from 2003-2004 before Dustin Schoenhofer joined to give the present band lineup. In addition, the band experienced a short hiatus in 2011 while Candace had her first child, a daughter, and then began writing material for this album in 2012.

As I stated, No One Can Save You From Yourself is the band’s fifth full album. Previous albums released by Walls of Jericho include The Bound Feed the Gagged (1999), All Hail the Dead (2004), With Devils Amongst Us (2006), and The American Dream (2008). Additionally, the band released three EPs. They are A Day and a Thousand Years (1999), From Hell (2006), and Redemption (2008). No One Can Save You From Yourself is the band’s first album with Napalm Records as their previous ones were released through Trustkill Records

The “Intro,” which is the short opening to the album, starts with sirens reminding one of a jail break. Over the sirens, we keep hearing that this is an emergency broadcast and that the U. S. President has declared martial law. The siren gives way to a high pitch guitar sound over marching boots. Then there is the high guitar sound repeated with staccato drums underneath. This leads into the next song, which is “Illusion of Safety.” We first hear the growling vocals with a driving drum and sustained guitar above the drum. There is a heavy rhythm guitar pattern played and a sliding guitar over that. The vocals are strong and sound quite angry. Parts of the song have the instrumentalists and vocalist unified rhythmically. The band states concerning the song: “We are lied to everyday. We are told wars are necessary for our safety but the truth is we've never been safe. “

“No One Can Save You From Yourself,” which is the title of the album was written with the idea that “...you are the only one responsible for your actions” and that if you keep doing the same things the same way, the result will always be the same. This has the one guitar playing a high staccato pitch with driving drums underneath. The growling is again strong and the instruments underneath are a mix of heavy rock, heavy metal beat. There is a tempo and slight change to the instrumental pattern. A nice touch is the band provides a choral background at times. The high guitar leads into the next verse and the underneath patterns returns. Toward the end of the song there is a part with the vocals over a strong drum beat. The song “Forever Militant,” features the rhythm guitar and drums playing a repeated staccato pattern against a repeated guitar chord. The vocals are similar to the previous songs and there are times in the song where everyone is unified musically. “The road of life is full of many hard choices and the easy choice is rarely a wise decision,” is the band’s statement concerning this song.

Fight the Good Fight,” opens with a sustained guitar note and a light guitar solo under it. Then the driving drums and vocals enter. This song also features back and forth vocals between Candace and the band. The instrumental part continues a driving beat throughout the song. At the end of the song there is a heavy guitar part that is repeated frequently with light cymbals played between. This song is a call to people to not give into “ideas and personality/gender roles that are often forced upon them,” but instead to go with your passions. Also, the band has released a video for this song and it may be viewed here.

One more song is “Cutbird,” which at first did not make sense to me until I read the lyrics. Candace wrote this song for her brother who died of brain cancer. He took over a skateboard company named Cutbird and had created a skateboard community for kids in Montana. The song opens with heavy guitar and heavy drums. There is a sense of urgency in the instrumental parts and vocals shows emotion as they seem to be like a cry. The chorus seems to say it all which is:

There is beauty in this
you just have to find it
And the beauty is I survived it

A song that was very touching to me because of the lyrics is “Relentless.” For this song, Candace had different people who are fighting cancer or other serious illnesses record “I am relentless.” There is a sense of awe hearing the individual voices and the voices all together as they repeat the phrase. According to Candance, in Revolver Magazine, one of the voices included 15-year-old Connor Bint, who passed away last year. Having lost several family members to cancer, this song means a lot to me and Candace is involved in Relentless Detroit Foundation. After the voices, there are the pounding guitars and drums, which continue throughout the song. The vocals have an angry touch to them and the band provides the chorus on the word “relentless.” Before I share some lyrics, the band created a video for “Rentless,” even though it doesn’t really show the band, and it can be viewed here. Here some of the lyrics:

Relentless. I got fight like a champion
Relentless. And I'll be the victor till the end
Relentless. I got fight like a champion
Relentless. And those that have
fallen will not be forgotten by me
Without struggle there is no strength
So god grant me strength

“Damage Done,” according to band is about how perspectives change from person to person and how often the focus is placed on the “symptom” of a “problem” rather than the “root.” The song “Reign Supreme” has the band telling us that actions have consequences and that revenge is never the answer. This song has an interesting ostinato played in the opening by a piano and bass, and then picked up by the guitar. Later it returns to the piano and bass. Midway there is a nice, short bass solo by Aaron Ruby. Next is the song, “Wrapped in Violence,” which has the pulsating guitar and fast drum beat under the strong growls. This song is about dealing with the loss of a close friend, having to watch the widow grieve as an outsider, and still be strong enough to nurture.

The song, “Beyond All Praise,” tells a little about how the album was created. They state that the possibilities are endless when man doesn’t mind who gets the credit. My favorite part of the statement is “Music for the sake of Music. A song that almost was my choice for favorite is “Anthem.” This song deals with taking responsibility for your actions and not blaming others for your circumstances. The guitar opens with a repeated melody. This is followed by the vocals, and the drums. Throughout the song, the instruments seem to take liberty with the melody and rhythm before reuniting for the anthem. The band provides a choral response to Candace. Later in the song, the guitar returns with the countermelody over the vocals and a straight drum beat. Some lyrics of interest in this song are:

One life we get one chance
Kill the past and just keep giving it back
If we fall we will still prevail
Stand up and take over the world
How will it go, how will it end
If I should take back that moment and do it all again

My favorite song is the one song that doesn’t fit the same mold as the other songs on the album, even though I enjoyed all of the songs. The song is “Probably Will.” This song is best described as a rock ballad. An interesting feature of the song is that Candace uses clear vocals for it and it is the last song. This song starts out with some light percussion and a syncopated piano part over it. Candace’s voice is strong and sustaining. This continues throughout the song. Later, around the second verse, some strings are added and the song has a gradual crescendo. The drums become louder with a staccato pattern played under a string ensemble sound. The song ends with a sustained chord and it seemed like the song is her response to possible criticism from the past. Some lyrics to the song include:

They say I may be crazy
I only say I've had my fill
They say I'll throw it all away
I probably will

They'll only give you what you're taking
But lately I've been unfulfilled
They say I'll probably blow it off someday
I probably will

The way they talk about each other
The way they talk about themselves
Well they could talk, talk, talk forever
And they probably will
you know they probably will

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with the album. I do have to admit that this was not the case with my first listen. However, after some serious listening, I was able to discover the true talent that this band possesses. No One Can Save You From Yourself has some of the band’s signature sound, but they have also expanded it. For example, a nice feature of this album is that most of the members had a part in the songwriting instead of just Candace. The energy is abundant with varied pounding drums, heavy guitar, often played in a staccato manner and the instruments were very tight. Candace is very good in her vocals, whether growling or clean and reminded me a little of Alissa Gluz-White. Candace, to me, is just a little rougher around the edges but very strong vocally. Another plus for me is that the lyrics that I received in the promo also contained a statement from the band concerning why each song was written. I hope those reasons are included in the release. This album is a definite for Walls of Jericho fans and would be a good addition for anyone looking to expand their music library. For additional information on the band, please check out the following links: