Review: Underoath – Define The Great Line

Underoath - Define the Great Line

When Underoath took their brief intermission on their 2016 Rebirth Tour, the banner behind Aaron Gillespie’s drum kit fell to floor, revealing the wind-swept dunes of 2006’s Define The Great Line as 2004’s They’re Only Chasing Safety’s final notes still reverberated around the venue. I stood on the delightfully shaky floors of Atlanta’s The Tabernacle, my favorite venue, and felt all of the memories of the upcoming album wash over me. Five years later, they’re still just as vivid.

The weekend before Define came out, my high school sweetheart and I ended our relationship. I “lost” my best friend, her sister, in the same fell swoop. I handled it all with the maturity of a sixteen year old boy, which is to say, I threw myself headfirst into very loud, very angst-ridden music. “In Regards to Myself”’s refrain of “What are you so afraid of?” became a rallying cry when I could bring myself to stop listening to Emery’s “The Ponytail Parades”… I know my flaws.

Like many of you reading this and reminiscing with me on this album, I’d already heard the leaked version of Define. I knew that something immensely more huge than Safety was coming. By this point in the album rollout, I’m pretty sure MTV had also already premiered the whole album on their website, “Writing on the Walls” played nonstop on Steven’s Untitled Rock Show, and I’d (probably) set streaming records on Underoath’s PureVolume page if things like that were tracked back in the aughts.

Read More “Underoath – Define The Great Line”

Review: Underoath – Erase Me


When Underoath announced in 2015 that the band was getting back together with original drummer Aaron Gillespie in the fold, it was announced as a “rebirth,” as the band knocked out a couple of reunion shows over the following years. It’s an appropriate way to describe Underoath’s return since it’s been eight years since Ø (Disambiguation) and nearly a decade since the band’s last release with Gillespie in the fold. And obviously so much has changed within the metal scene and music community as a whole during the band’s hiatus; Underoath found themselves at a crossroads between pleasing older fans and drawing in a generation of listeners that may have never heard Define The Great Line. So while a level of musical reincarnation was expected, the extent of that remained unknown. Recorded in 2017 with producer Matt Squire, the band looked to deconstruct the idea of Underoath while incorporating all the moments of anxiety , betrayal, and struggles of the past decade. And ultimately these sessions resulted with Erase Me – the most polarizing heavy rock album of 2018.

Read More “Underoath – Erase Me”

Review: Underoath – Ø (Disambiguation)

Underoath - O

It’s truly amazing that Underoath is still a band in the year 2010.  After the great success of 2006’s Define The Great Line, the band unexpectedly dropped off the Warped Tour and disappeared, coming close to breaking up due to screamer Spencer Chamberlain’s personal issues.  The band bounced back from that rough patch to release the furious Lost In The Sound of Separation.  Despite everything, the band had emerged even stronger.  But they had to pump the brakes once again.  Tension and disconnect between the band (Chamberlain, guitarists Tim McTague and James Smith, bassist Grant Brandell, and keyboardist Chris Dudley) and vocalist/drummer Aaron Gillespie (the last remaining Underoath member) led to his departure from the band earlier this year.  Once again faced with the prospect of disbanding, the band decided to fight through it, enlisting Daniel Davison (formerly of the Almighty Norma Jean) to replace Gillespie behind the kit.  After a few jam sessions, the band grew closer, relaxed, and realized that they could attempt some things on their next record that they could never do with Gillespie (as it should be no surprise that he enjoyed the pop side of things).  Many things have tried to destroy the Florida, metalcore outfit, but just like Michael Myers, no matter how many times you try to kill them, they always come back stronger.  And what emerged from the band’s latest struggles and triumphs may be the band’s greatest achievement.

Read More “Underoath – Ø (Disambiguation)”

Review: Underoath – Survive, Kaleidoscope

Underoath - Survive, Kaleidoscope

For a band that has gone through numerous member changes and only retained one original member, Underoath are doing pretty damn good. When the band lost their vocalist Dallas Taylor, it seemed like the end was near, but with continued fate, the group found a new vocalist named Spencer Chamberlain and they haven’t looked back since. The group has become one of the biggest bands not only in the post-hardcore scene, but the music scene in general. With every record, the band continues to push their songwriting abilities. After the highly successful album, Define The Great Line, the band went on lengthy tours and continued to work away at trying to topple their last effort. Knowing that this was going to take some time, they released the DVD 777. The DVD was mostly footage of the band on tour supporting the album, but it also included a short concert that was done for Myspace’s Secret Shows. 

Read More “Underoath – Survive, Kaleidoscope”

Review: Underoath – Lost in the Sound of Separation

Underoath - Lost in the Sound of Separation

Why do we fall, sir? So that we might learn to pick ourselves up.

Alfred Pennyworth, Batman Begins

When I look back on what has occurred around Underoath over the past two years, this is one quote I think of. There were plenty of highlights in Camp UO, such as 2006’s Define The Great Line being certified gold and debuting at number two on the Billboard. But all of that seemed to get overshadowed with the band’s sudden drop off that summer’s Warped Tour, the near break-up of the band, and vocalist Spencer Chamberlain’s battle with substance abuse and past and present demons. It was a dark time for the Florida sextet. But they fought through it and came out of it stronger than ever – armed with their sixth studio album, Lost In The Sound Of Separation, just waiting to unleash it on the world. 

Read More “Underoath – Lost in the Sound of Separation”

Review: Underoath – Define the Great Line

Underoath - Define the Great Line

Chasing the safety of their last release, Underoath have returned with Define The Great Line, an album that undeniably marks the transition of how accessible metalcore can be. After two years of extended touring, the Florida sextet joined co-producers Matt Goldman (Copeland, Cartel) and Adam Dutkiwicz (guitarist for Killswitch Engage) to create a release that would showcase both talent and growth. Pleased with their six-man lineup and indie label Tooth & Nail imprint Solid State, Define the Great Line is undoubtedly a record that shows how masterfully a band can be both delicate and brutal with the same sound. Three apparent differences arise in this transition record: bottomless metal influence, the depth and variety of vocal work and excessive percussions. 

Read More “Underoath – Define the Great Line”