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05.29.13 Killer Weekend At Sasquatch04.12.13 The Dear Hunter Ranked
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12.13.11 Rec Me Hip Hop12.08.11 My Top 20 From 2011
11.09.11 To No Shave Or Not To No Shave11.08.11 Disappointment
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Disappointment

Those Albums that at the time made me weep for how a band I liked or even loved could follow up a great release with something so...bad.
1Dredg
Chuckles & Mr. Squeezy


My inspiration for this list. Following The Pariah, The Parrot, The Delusion, this is just garbage. In terms of their whole discography, even worse garbage. So heartbreaking.
2Sum 41
Underclass Hero


Chuck was already a letdown after Does This Look Infected? I used to love those guys; the Cross Your "T"s and Gouge Your "I"s DVD they sent out with DTLI? was hilarious. Underclass Hero was not even listenable. Maybe I just grew out of them. But I think it was just a terrible album.
3New Found Glory
Catalyst


Sticks and Stones was awesome pop punk. I don't even care about the criticisms of the vocals. "My Friends Over You" was an anthem for a kid with fledgling girl problems. Catalyst just couldn't capture any of the emotions as well and came off flat. Ironic that my band ended up playing a cover of "Failure's Not Flattering" at our shows for several months.
4 Emery
I'm Only A Man


One of the scariest disappointments on this list. After releasing the amazing The Question, to come out with this?? I honestly thought Emery were done. There are a couple good tracks on this albums but overall it's trash. Thank God, they came out with In Shallow Seas We Sail next, which just might be the greatest post-hardcore album.
5The Sound of Animals Fighting
Lover, the Lord Has Left Us...


Tiger & the Duke was awesome. Interludes aside (although they were ok), I loved all those songs. This album by contrast was almost impossible to get into. I think they took the experimentation a little too far, leaving behind too much of the catchy riffs and musicianship that had made the previous album great.
6Linkin Park
Minutes to Midnight


Linkin Park was my favorite band for a couple years in middle school and helped me differentiate my musical tastes from my parents'. I didn't think Meteora was as good as Hybrid Theory, but I still loved it. But when I listened to Minutes to Midnight, looking for what I had loved from their previous work, I didn't hear it. It seemed like they were trying to mature, but it just came off like they were trying too hard. I do respect the attempt to get out of their box. It's just that I had liked them in their box. I don't listen to LP anymore, but the occasional nostalgic "Papercut" comes off way better than anything off this album.
7Fear Before
Fear Before


Why drop the March of Flames? When you just put out your best work, The Always Open Mouth, what are you thinking casting aside half of your name and then putting out a self-titled album saying "this is the definition of our sound" when there isn't one track fit to lick the boots of a"My Deer hunter". We may have always called your Fear Before anyways, but it seems like you left the best part of you when you dropped the March of Flames.
8Taking Back Sunday
Taking Back Sunday


Another self-titled album letdown. Not that there is anything spectacularly bad on this album. But try listening to Tell All Your Friends and then listening to this. Hah! TBS has been on a downward trend, as New Again wasn't really that good either. But this was the album that I hoped would push them back in the right direction. And it falls flat on its face.
9The Decemberists
The King Is Dead


This album is boring. The Hazards of Love may have been a little overblown, but at least it had some variety, some spice, some life. Even after several listens through this album, I'm still surprised when it ends. When did it even change songs? Please stop the "country"-zation of folk music. Or go put out a country album. O, Valencia...
10My Chemical Romance
Danger Days: The True Lives Of...


Nanananananana? More like hahahahahahahahaha. I guess their pretentiousness finally caught up with them. For a band that was totally full of themselves, I actually liked The Black Parade quite a bit. And Three Cheers even more. I wondered if it was all right to like such a pretentious band if they still put out good music. Glad to see they solved my dilemma.
11Demon Hunter
The World Is A Thorn


Loooooved The Tryptich. Very appealing to the angry Christian in me at the time. Storm the Gates of Hell saw me lose a little of that enthusiasm, but I'll be damned if going to a couple of their shows didn't bring it all back! But I don't know if it's me, no longer a Christian, no longer as angry, or no longer as into the genre, or the music, but this album didn't do anything for me. Nothing different, nothing special, just bland. I was 99% putting the blame on me, but then I listened to "Undying" and "Ribcage", and yep, those tracks still slay. And if it's not me, then...
12Jack Johnson
To the Sea


I think I might have overdosed on Jack Johnson. There was a couple year period where I listened to him ALL of the time. He was laid back, his lyrics were accessible, he was catchy, and it was nice to break out the guitar and always have "Banana Pancakes" in my back pocket to play for girls. This album features more or less the same old songs. They just aren't new, fresh, inspired, catchy, or even that good anymore. I try to be fair and weigh my overall disenchantment with Jack into the equation. But still, this album is found wanting.
13Avenged Sevenfold
Avenged Sevenfold


City of Evil was bad ass. Epic. Shredtastic. Avenged Sevenfold was kind of gross. And sad. Still shredtastic, but in smaller doses, and only near the beginning of the album. And the lyrics....abysmal. Not that that was ever a strong suit, but still. And then some truly awful tracks where they try to break out of the genre and just can't quite even make it to mediocre. The saddest part was I was so excited for this album that I actually ended up with two copies of it. And I ended up giving them both away. I Won't See You Tonight...
14Anberlin
New Surrender


This is one of the albums on this list that I actually kind of like. But Cities is one of my all-time favorite albums, and Fin* is one of my favorite songs. I think it would have been impossible for Anberlin not to disappoint. But their poppy slant, and lazy rehashing of Feel Good Drag as a single, did not do them any favors on an album that otherwise would have been quite good.
15AFI
Decemberunderground


Another album that probably could never have lived up to its predecessor, Sing the Sorrow, which IMO is a Classic. But the new heavy slant towards electronic elements was a marked change and I rarely caught a glimpse of the elements that had made me such a big AFI fan. I still ended up liking this album; but it disappoints on two levels: 1) it came after an absolute Classic, and 2) it marked a musical shift to AFI that will keep them from ever reaching that former glory again. They should have kept it to Blakq Audio.
16Portugal. the Man
In the Mountain in the Cloud


One of the myriad of bands I can thank Sputnik for introducing me to, PtM are amazing. Prolific, catchy, innovative, and thought-provoking, they are one of my favorite bands to attempt to falsetto along to. This latest release of there's is, however, lacking in a lot of the imagination and catchiness that I have come to associate with PtM. Perhaps their very fertility in churning up album after album finally caught up to them, but this just seemed uninspired. And who thought it was a good idea to have all those parenthetical song titles? I'd like to see them take a couple years before their next release and get back on the track of great albums like The Satanic Satanist.
17Cartel
Cartel


Chroma was perfect pop punk. From beginning to end that album was track after track of catchy fun tunes, with enough emotion and variety to make it all come together as a cohesive whole. Their self-titled saw them lean too far on the pop end of the spectrum, try and go in a couple new directions, ditch a lot of the heart that had made tracks like "Burn This City" and "Save Us" special, and instead yielded a rather bland and unimaginative collection of mediocre songs. Generic as Chroma might have been, they pulled it off really well. I was glad to see the band get back on track with Cycles and hope that this album proves to have been only an unfortunate blip.
18Saosin
In Search of Solid Ground


God I loved Saosin. "It's Far Better To Learn," "They Perched On Their Stilts," "Bury Your Head"? Yes please. Even if they did see a slight dip when Anthony Green left, their self-titled was still great. I still love every track on that album, and whatever Cove's failings may be live, he was great on the record. When I first listened through In Search of Solid Ground, I almostd it from my library immediately. No redemption on this album, I thought. Fortunately, I kept it and it grew on me, and I do like it now. But it's just light years away from what they had done before. Only "I Keep My Secrets Safe" really came close. I felt bad for the drummer, considering he was the only doing an above average job on the album. Everything else just seemed pretty uninspired. I can only hope we see a return to form with whoever comes on to permanently replace Cove.
19Relient K
Five Score and Seven Years Ago


Lyrics were a strong point previously for Matt & co of Relient K. Even their early early albums were still at least clever; tongue in cheek as it were. Mmhmm had it's fair share of lyrical gems, and the album was undeniably catchy. Another solid release from a band I had started to really like. This album was boring. Unoriginal. Un-inventive. Way too one-dimensional and way too focused on Matt's contributions. Thankfully, they returned to form somewhat with their latest release. As for this album, their could melt crayons on it for all I care.
20LoveHateHero
America Underwater


Riffs! Riffs riffs riffs! That's what made White Lies appealing to me. Throw in some catchy choruses and it was a pretty good album. America Underwater (title track aside) just wasn't. It took all the whiny, overblown, stretched thin elements off of White Lies, made a whole album out of them, and didn't write the riffs to compensate this time around. From Love to Hate, one album to the next. How exactly is this so common?
21Four Year Strong
In Some Way, Shape, Or Form.


I can only hope I change my mind about this album, that more listens will make it sound catchier, head-bobbier, funner, and less like everything else I've ever heard before from pop-punk. They may be writing better songs overall than on Rise or Die Trying, but damn if those songs weren't a thousand times catchier than these even with all those simple riffs. Enemy of the World struck a great balance between the catchiness of RoDT and adding in a little bit more musicianship. In Some Way, Shape, or Form, they just couldn't do it again on this album.
22August Burns Red
Leveler


I was pumped when I saw them live last year and they announced their new album was gonna be called Leveler. "Heavy as shit!" I thought with excitement. The fact that the song they previewed off it did not catch my attention whatsoever was not very worrisome. I had already moshed my brains out at that point. Constellations was a tremendous leap forward from Messengers. It is a brilliant album that I consider a classic. Leveler seems to show me a band that has run out of creative ideas. Where they had always depended on a bevy of catchy riffs and heavy breakdowns to carry their songs, nothing they present on this album really touches anything they've done before. I guess you can only write so many different breakdowns...
23Panic! at the Disco
Pretty. Odd.


A Fever You Can't Sweat Out was a great album. It was catchy, it was fun, it had interesting lyrics, and girls liked it too! It embodied its title. Pretty. Odd was a poor follow up. It wasn't catchy, it tried too hard, it begged you to find it interesting and clever. Maybe the fame and pressure overburdened the band. Either way, the album lived up to its title as well. Or at least the odd part.
24Mae
Singularity


Besides "Brink of Disaster," which could fit in with the best of tracks off Mae's previous sublime effort, The Everglow, there was nothing to redeem this album. Mediocre through and through, it paled in comparison to its predecessor and was an insult to all the potential I thought the band had displayed. And it sure didn't help that the best track was placed first, meaning it was all downhill from there. That song truly was the brink of disaster, at least as far as my opinion of Mae is concerned.
25House of Heroes
Suburba


I've been lucky enough to share the stage with these guys and spend some time hanging out with them. They're really cool and humble guys, and they have put out some great albums with Say No More and The End is Not the End. But Suburba was not a good album. It was average in every respect. Some good songs, some bad songs, but mostly a lot of generic poppy punk. For a band that had gone from crafting catchy and musically interesting numbers like "Make a Face Like You Mean It (Vampires)" to coming up with a brilliantly executed concept album that stretched the bounds of their genre, this return to generic pop was disenchanting and troubling. It was only fitting they named the album Suburba.
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