|All Artists: Flyleaf|
Title: Memento Mori
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 1
Label: A&M / Octone
Original Release Date: 1/1/2009
Re-Release Date: 11/10/2009
Genres: Pop, Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Genres: Pop, Rock
Memento Mori, the highly anticipated follow up to Flyleaf's platinum selling, self-titled debut album. Flyleaf bleed, grow, love and live on MEMENTO MORI. The Texas quintet's latest offering is a collection of poignant,... more »
Memento Mori, the highly anticipated follow up to Flyleaf's platinum selling, self-titled debut album. Flyleaf bleed, grow, love and live on MEMENTO MORI. The Texas quintet's latest offering is a collection of poignant, passionate and pensive hard rock songs. From the kinetic first single, "Again," to the touching album closer, "Arise," guitarists Sameer Bhattacharya and Jared Hartman trade orchestral riffs that seesaw from soaring to searing. Drummer James Culpepper smoothly propels every groove forward, while Pat Seals' bass anchors unforgettable hooks. Gliding across this majestic melodic backdrop, Lacey's vocals build into beauty from pain. Her voice reaches transcendent heights on songs like "Set Apart This Dream" and "Missing." Flyleaf's flame keeps rising.
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"There's some strength left in us yet" (3.5 stars)
Andrew Estes | Maine | 11/10/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Four years after the release of their highly successful self-titled album, the most prominent Christian rock band from Texas -- Flyleaf -- have reunited with producer Howard Benson to dish out their long-awaited sophomore effort, "Memento Mori." While the first album had more of a garage band edge to it, the follow-up finds the band shedding away some of their punkier second-rate Nirvana influences in favor for a much more polished and radio-ready sound. This should come as no surprise though, as Flyleaf are one of those rare rock bands nowadays who can sell a record and since their debut was a bit raw and immature.
Touring heavily with the likes of Korn and Disturbed has done little to soften the band's strong Christian themes. In fact, on "Memento Mori," such moments are much clearer than ever. For some this could be a turn-off, but for the (ahem) faithful followers, it may be a plus. Put plain and simple, Lacey loves Jesus and wants to make sure you know all about it. Putting that aside, though, the album is certainly a notch above the first as far as musicianship goes. While the band has yet to establish a distinctive style, they back up Lacey's broad themes and unique voice well, and Benson's improved production only serves to give the whole affair more bombast and sonic improvements. Put simply, this is the same Flyleaf you know already, just marginally improved and perfected.
If "Memento Mori" has one fatal flaw, though, it's that the songs tend to blend into one another without a single moment sticking out. While there isn't necessarily a bad song to be found, it can be an overall taxing album to listen to and certainly begs the question of whether or not it will continue Flyleaf's string of success. At the end of the day, their second effort improves on almost all fronts, leaving memorable song-writing on the back-burner. Chalk it up to a burnt-out producer (seriously, what album HASN'T Howard Benson produced this year?) and a slightly immature band. Hopefully album number three irons out some of the wrinkles, but in the meantime, this will suffice.
Michael Davis | 11/11/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was eagerly awaiting the release of this record so I could buy it because I loved Flyleaf's first album. The version of the album I have actually has 22 songs because I bought it initially off Itunes to get the two itunes exclusive tracks. I then came back on here and found out there were five more Amazon exclusive tracks. There is not a bad song here. Lacey's voice never ceases to amaze me. Also, the lyrics on this record are awesome. I like the musical style too. I know that the overtly Christian lyrics my be a bit of a turn off to some of the band's non-Christian fans, they are the opposite for me. I love my savior Jesus Christ, and what he has done for me, and I love how Flyleaf expresses that they feel the same way. Give this record a try. You won't be disappointed."
The wait was well worth it
Mark | CT | 11/21/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Every so often, I come across an album that excites me more and more as I listen to each song for the first time and leaves a smile on my face when it's over. This is one of those albums.
"Memento Mori" is a concept album that explores light and dark and reminds the listener to live while being mindful of death. It should come as no surprise then, given knowledge of the band members' faiths, that the lyrics have a strong Christian theme running through them. While Flyleaf's debut had its share of Christian references, they are much more pronounced and in abundance on this album. The lyrics are meaningful, deep, honest, and blunt. You won't find them in the CD booklet. Instead, the booklet contains a series of journal entries (one for each song) that give insight into the meanings behind the songs, written from the point of view of the commander of an army.
The album is full of original, infectious melodies that have enough variety to carry it through from beginning to end without it becoming boring. There is a nice balance of heavier and lighter rock. The songs are arranged well, starting with an upbeat anthem and ending with a hopeful and haunting closer. Lacey pours her soul into every song she sings. It's clear that the band put a lot of effort into the album, and it paid off.
Although I purchased the deluxe edition of the album, I decided to base my rating only on the main album so I wouldn't have to deduct any stars from the final score for the mini-CD. The extra four-song CD isn't bad, but it's nothing special. It lacks the creativity and diversity of the main album, and doesn't really warrant the hassle of having to pop it into the CD player after the main album is finished. It sounds more like a mini b-sides album with its somewhat forgettable melodies. I was also unable to download the songs from it into my iTunes library (though I did not deduct any stars because of this, since I don't know whose fault this is). Unless you are a serious fan of the band, I would recommend the regular version of "Memento Mori" over the deluxe version.