Much has been expected of Devil You Know's début album, The Beauty Of Destruction. The band have an impressive cast, topped off by former Killswitch Engage vocalist Howard Jones. With members of All Shall Perish, Divine Heresy and Bleeding Through amongst others handling instrumental duties, this is a band with serious metal pedigree. But does The Beauty of Destruction live up to the considerable expectation?
A New Beginning starts the album in barnstorming fashion, from the opening riff with the accompanying chants of "Hey, Hey!" to when the track kicks in with Howard's fierce vocal delivery while John Sankey throws in some fantastic drum fills underpinning it all. If you wanted an opening track to make people sit up and take notice, this fits the bill brilliantly. Embracing The Torture features a truly evil sounding main djent influenced riff and flows well between its very heavy verses and a more melodic chorus while lead single Seven Years Alone is enjoyable despite the vocal effects that are applied in the chorus making Howard seem somewhat auto-tuned.
They're also adept in the slower numbers, with "It's Over" sounding emotional without sounding clichéd courtesy of some great guitar work and another good turn from Howard. A Mind Insane sees the heaviest vocals on the album, mixing in some screeched efforts reminiscent of a more accessible Anaal Nathrakh to the usual other styles along with the album's stand-out guitar solo. The album dips in quality a little towards the end (as many often do) but Shut It Down is a highly enjoyable song that is liable to have bodies flying in circle pits when it is performed at gigs.
From a performance perspective, The Beauty Of Destruction is something of a resurrection for Howard Jones in particular, who turns in his best overall vocal performance since Killswitch Engage's The End Of Heartache a decade ago. The rest of the band sound extremely tight, with John Sankey's thundering behind the drum kit particularly enjoyable. If they can play as well live as they do on this record then their shows will be high quality to say the least. Overall this is a very promising début effort from Devil You Know, with plenty to satisfy fans of the members previous & other bands and equally enough to win them plenty of new admirers. A band to keep your eyes and ears open for.