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Every Atreyu Album Ranked Worst To Best

As you likely know, Orange County was certainly “the (literal) zone” for metal-adjacent, punk rock, third-wave ska, and racist acts large and small in the late-90s/early-aughts, and Yorba Linda’s metalcore superstars Atreyu, formed in 1998 and, fun fact of the day: were named after the main character in “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York,” certainly benefited from being at the epicenter such a strong and vibrant music scene. Anyway, eight, yes EIGHT, albums later, the band is a sort of a Kiwanis club of he-man, women hater, elder statesmen entity for aggressive music in every single county excluding Fresno County, but honestly, who wants to rule there? Don’t answer that, read on for our not so hot accurate takes on the band’s catalog.

8. Congregation of the Damned (2009)

Atreyu’s fifth full-length studio album and last release for Hollywood Records, was their first of two LP missteps, their next being their subsequent release “Long Live,” and likely caused the band’s brief hiatus just three years later. If you think we’re so wrong, it must be said that we believe that any Atreyu effort is truly good, but this album sounds unfocused and inconsistent, and the songs sadly are just good overall, but not great. Have no fear, kids, the albums following this release have much less filler, and successfully resurrected the five-piece in a glorious way, particularly the catchy, catchy “In Our Wake.” Still, “Congregation of the Damned” proved that Atreyu had super fulfilled fans, as it debuted at number 18 on the Billboard 200, a fantastic feat for ANY act, especially a heavy one like Atreyu.

Play it again: “Ravenous”
Skip it: Sadly, a bunch of it

7. Long Live (2015)

When your favorite doo-wop, brass ball, reckless, and surprisingly goofy act named Atreyu left Hollywood Records and took a short break to decompress, re-evaluate their overall mission statement, get some well-needed rest, and watch the war drama “Bridesmaids” with their respective significant others, no one expected ‘em to come back so soon, or at all, and certainly few thought that they’d release their heaviest effort “Long Live” on another label, their current home at Universal’s imprint Spinefarm Records, current home to the huge AF Sleep Token and the even bigger Paris Hilton. Well, the band likes to keep you guessing, and as we mentioned earlier, this one is more mid-Atreyu than most, but it beat “Congregation of the Damned” by a hair here so others may live, so happily, we hear the band’s heartbeats sans flatlines.

Play it again: “I Would Kill / Lie / Die (For You)”
Skip it: Sadly, slightly less than a bunch of it

6. Baptize (2021)

Atreyu’s eighth and most recent full-length studio album, is underrated by definition, and since it has the biggest lineup change of the band’s twenty-plus-year career, it’s very tough to talk about, but, no matter what, it’s our job to be objective. “Baptize” is the first Atreyu LP to not feature prolific co-frontman, screamer, fitness icon, and huggable panda Alex Varkatzas, so inevitably there are growing pains present here. However, it’s the band’s most underrated album and current Atreyu band members Travis Miguel, Dan Jacobs, Brandon Saller, Marc “Porter” McKnight, and new drummer Kyle Rosa all shine like glimmering weed, specifically Sativa. Once you’re done with this LP, spin the band’s newer tunes, in particular, the perfect tune, “Drowning”.

Play it again: The one-two punch of “Strange Powers Of Prophecy” into the title track
Skip it: “Stay”

5. Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses (2002)

2002 was an incredible year for fans of melody and yelling combined, with classic post-hardcore/mall screamo LPs like The Used’s self-titled debut and Missy Elliott’s “Under Construction” defining the genre. The world showcased that it was ready for Atreyu to storm the aggressive Warped Tour gates with lip gloss, black, tulips, and duck lips with their debut studio album. Still a fan favorite, it is a very solid intro to the band that truly got better as they matriculated, but it still pales in comparison to many of their later efforts, and you know we’re right unless you don’t. Released via unproblematic label Victory Records, who knowingly owned the genre’s space in the early-aughts, “Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses” gave fans more of the latter than the former, and several of its songs still populate Atreyu shows today.

Play it again: “Ain’t Love Grand”
Skip it: “Dilated”

4. In Our Wake (2018)

Atreyu’s lucky #7 of a record, is sadly Alex Varkatzas’ last, but happily, it is their second catchiest effort, next to their major label debut, with three back-to-back singles in tracks 1 to 3 to 2 starting the title track “In Our Wake,” “The Time Is Now,” and “House of Gold” absolutely showcasing that yelling and screaming bands can create infectious vocal and instrumental melodies. Without question, this studio album is the band’s best post-2007, and even scene superheroes like Underoath’s Aaron Gillespie, Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows, and Genesis’ Peter Gabriel agree, put such into the open, and showcase valor/grace such with their features. Producer John Feldmann puts his specific sheen on this record,  and people who didn’t normally vibe to Atreyu definitely took notice, as “The Time Is Now” to this day is the band’s publicly highest-streamed song on Spotify!

Play it again: “The Time Is Now”
Skip it: “No Control”

3. The Curse (2004)

Atreyu’s lack of a sophomore slump, LP “The Curse,” successfully took the band from an opening act slot act to the headliner position, but their direct support jaunt supporting The (aforementioned) Used on their highest-selling album tour in 2004 for “In Love and Death” with Head Automatica on second, and The Bronx starting things off didn’t exactly hurt their cause as well. Fun fact: The limited edition version of “The Curse” contained a cover of Bon Jovi’s “Don’t Stop Believing,” and said track from “Nevermind” infiltrated more than the “Punk Goes Pop” crowd, that’s for sure! Also, this record debuted at NUMBER ONE on the US Independent Albums chart, and eventually went GOLD but not in a house of gold, showcasing that a major label was without question in the band’s periphery. Basically, record producer GGGarth killed it here and for underrated Puerto Rican act Puya.

Play it again: “Demonology And Heartache”
Skip it: “Corseting”

2. A Death-Grip on Yesterday (2006)

At just nine tracks, which admittedly is an extremely unconventional, unexpected, unusual, and another adjective starting with the letter “u” number of songs for a full-length studio album, which we theorize is such because the band wanted to do the bare minimum to fulfill the last album in their contract with Victory Records, and at just under thirty-three minutes by eleven seconds, Atreyu’s third album, “A Death-Grip on Yesterday” is a succinct, heavy, nutrient-dense, and IBS inducing masterpiece. If you disagree with our opinion here, not only are you a dumbass, but we implore you to go outside, attend an Atreyu show, attempt to frown with your hands crossed, and NOT bob your head to first single “Ex’s And Oh’s;” spoiler alert, it is impossible to do anything but rock and roll, hit the bar, lose control, and play tic tac toe to this number.

Play it again: “Ex’s And Oh’s”
Skip it: “We Stand Up”

1. Lead Sails Paper Anchor (2007)

Atreyu’s fourth full-length studio album and first for major label Hollywood Records, the conglomerate that brought me, you, and everyone we know Donald Duck, Fastball, Miley Cyrus, and Prussian Blue, is a true “no skip” release appealing to fans of Metallica, Rocket From The Crypt, Descendents, and Daffy Duck’s spoken word protest album. Like the #4 slot almost-medal winning “In Our Wake, Goldfinger’s frontman John Feldmann perfectly captured the band in peak form, and all became undeniably musically dense and non-violent bulls in the process. Also, to reference another Atreyu release here, like “The Curse,” this one also went Gold because of its four strong singles “Becoming The Bull,” “Doomsday,” “Falling Down,” and “Slow Burn,” and even crowd favorite 80s metal-esque tune “Blow” had a music video. In conclusion, contrary to popular stupidhead belief, “lead” here is pronounced like “dead,” and not like “feed,” idiots.

Play it again: Not doing blow, but listening to “Blow”
Skip it: Doing blow and not listening to your friends letting you know that you have a problem