The Used
Lies for the Liars


4.0
excellent

Review

by Michael Roberts USER (99 Reviews)
June 14th, 2007 | 67 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The Used come correct incorporating news aspects and instruments to their sound, in turn creating a consistent and variety filled record.

I’ve always thought The Used had a lot of potential that they weren’t always taking advantage of. Admittedly that is quite an odd thing to say about a band who has encountered great mainstream success, is signed to a major label, and who practically has a cult following. But seriously, it seemed like every time I picked up an old record of the band I would check out maybe four songs and move onto something else. As far as I’m concerned, the group has failed to put together a complete record with their own touch on it. After listening to a few songs streaming from this they I was sold that things were going to change with their third full length. In the end, I was quite satisfied with my purchase as Lies For The Liars is a well crafted pop punk record at times laced with dark undertones, showing a new and more matured side to the group.

As vague and cheesy as it may sound, there is a definite dark undertone to parts of this record. Then again, just starring at the cover art certainly gives the impression that this will not be an ideal sunny summer day soundtrack. Lead single “The Bird and the Worm” continues to lock in that theme opening with a string section which would suit a Danny Elfman score. Things quickly explode into an electric verse and an even more epic chorus complete with violins in the background. Transitions from the tranquil string sections to the fiery electric ones are done phenomenally, showing the group’s progression and improvement. In terms of representing an album, the single is an excellent choice. Ambiance is once again experimented with in “Wake The Dead” as the faint sound effects really add a creepy feel into the introduction. Very quickly things explode into a fist pumping, chanting chorus giving drums the opportunity to dish out some mean rolls. Halfway through the song a softer acoustic section seems to be a light shining through the clouds as it completely changes the feel of the song. They bring violins in once again as well as a female guest vocalist, both of which really create a unique feel. The Used have figured out how to successfully link very diverse sounding sections into one song and make them work fluently.

When the group ditches the sound effects and overdramatics (bad joke) they still can maintain their dark undertone. While certainly not as prevalent, they still keep the theme alive in certain situations. Second track “Pretty Handsome Awkward” is without question a more straightforward rock song with a gimmick free beat and pace. The guitar plays a very interesting melody throughout the chorus and the outro but Bert steals the show in specific sections. His lower growls and obscure lines such as “You bleed just like you puke” definitely give off a vibe as does the whispered bridge. “Paralyzed” opens with a slow yet jumpy feeling passage and exercises bouncy bass line throughout the verse. Things begin to seem focused around the chorus as it is certainly entertaining, “Paralyzed by the same old antics/back and forth like some walking spastic/how could a fistfight ever be romantic?” The track ends on an extended and modified chorus with the repetition and slight switch ups working together terrifically. It shows just how much the group has tuned up their song writing.

Thankfully, not every track on the record gives out a gloomy vibe. If anything, some tracks do the exact opposite. The opener “The Ripper” is a great example as it creates energy with its fast progressions, solid tempo changes, and a powerful, screamed bridge. While not staying at a rapid pace throughout, the liveliness is always apparent as is the expected catchiness factor. A later track “Hospital” sounds quite reminiscent of some Black Parade tracks. Its strongly focused rhythm guitar part certainly puts out that vibe. Regardless, the track ends up very enjoyable thanks to its solid composition and entertaining chorus, “Before I cross my heart and hope to die at all/take off my mask and leave the lies to the liars/before I close my eyes I’m gonna give it up/ take off my mask and leave the lies to the liars.” After a chant section over another chorus things end with a fury of drum fills. It is not difficult imagining the group closing a live set with this track. However, the actual record ends with the ballad “Smoother Me” once more showing variety. It features Bert on the piano laying down some soothing vocal patterns. Once more strings make a pleasant impression here, as there is a brief instrumental break before drums come in for the second verse. The song does pick up but things thankfully never go for the ultra intense and cheesy, super emotional ending. Once more their maturity is shown as they end the record in strong fashion and do so showing off some variety.

There is a lot to rave about for The Used and their third full length studio effort. It certainly shows off a decent range of songs in turns of sounds and themes. String sections are incorporated extremely strongly into a handful on songs and really add a great deal to them. However, the record does not fully rely on the use of them in order to serve up enjoyment. The more straightforward tracks feature enhanced composition and maturity making them a satisfying listen. Despite large portions of the record featuring dark undertones, the theme never becomes overbearing as the tracks are placed accurately throughout. Lies For The Liars is a record which just seems to get better with every listen as it is consistent throughout, full of variety, and just screams improvement. The Used clearly switched some aspects of their music up and these adjustments along with natural growth have guided them to craft the best record of their career.

Final Rating: 4/5



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user ratings (820)
Chart.
3.1
good
other reviews of this album
Scott M. Baldwin (2)
I'll tell you the name of the game, we call it "Riding the Gravy Train"....

Ryan Lizotte (4)
The Used might have "Used" up a bit of their gas on the first two, but they had JUST enough left in ...

VicariousIntent (4)
The Used's most mature effort yields some of the band's best material, but isn't without it's flaws....

Fort23 (3.5)
The Used grow up, but don't make Post-grunge their new genre....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Fort23
June 14th 2007


2475 Comments


Pretty good review, good album, good.This Message Edited On 06.14.07

AmericnZero02
June 14th 2007


3353 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Good review, I voted. This is definitely an improvement for the used IMO. My only complaint is that this seems a little short. Yeah it clocks in at 39 mins which isnt that short. The first time i listened to it i thought "that was great....wait its over already? For some reason I think Lies for the Liars would have been better off with a 12th song.

ToWhatEnd
June 14th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

See I got a bonus addition from Target so I have a bonus studio track called Tunnel and a live version of Maybe Memories. Hit me up on AIM if you want them.

metallicaman8
June 14th 2007


4677 Comments


Nice work, TWE. got muh vote!

plane
Staff Reviewer
June 14th 2007


6094 Comments


Good review, but this sucks.

lunchforthesky
June 14th 2007


1039 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

good review.

AmericnZero02
June 14th 2007


3353 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Oh, thats tight ToWhatEnd. I got a live version of A box full of sharp objects but it sounds almost the same as the studio version. Maybe ill hit you up sometime.

Storm In A Teacup
June 15th 2007


13167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I don't understand why so many people say this is their best album. It's about the same sound as the last couple albums, except poppier.

ToWhatEnd
June 15th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's about the same sound as the last couple albums, except poppier.
No, just no.

Storm In A Teacup
June 15th 2007


13167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

IF that's what you want to believe, okay. But I know the truth.

ToWhatEnd
June 15th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yes, but I mean I Caught Fire and All That I've Got are freakin poppy my brother.

Storm In A Teacup
June 15th 2007


13167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yes, the last two albums do have quite a few poppy moments, but they also had heavier portions to balance it all out. Not much that would really qualify as heavy is on here (the songs that do also end up having pop elements thrown in), and honestly, "Smother Me" makes me want to throw the fuck up.

ToWhatEnd
June 15th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They seemed to replace the heavier sections with string sections (in terms of contrasting records). I agree that this certainly isn't as heavy as their previous work but to me that just goes to show at least slightly the change in their sound.

"Smother Me" makes me want to throw the **** up.
Why don't you track down Hawthorne Heights, listen to that song and try to get in on some guest vocals for their upcoming record :lol:This Message Edited On 06.15.07

Storm In A Teacup
June 15th 2007


13167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

[quote=]Why don't you track down Hawthorne Heights[/quote]

http://www.sputnikmusic.com/album.php?reviewid=5389
http://www.sputnikmusic.com/album.php?reviewid=4195

[quote=]try to get in on some guessed vocals for their upcoming record[/quote]

lol that would be ironic then.This Message Edited On 06.15.07

ToWhatEnd
June 15th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

See the edit, tis late in these parts. Now that I think about it I really wish I hadn't just mentioned their name because every Used and HH thread seems to always talk about the other.

Storm In A Teacup
June 15th 2007


13167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

[quote=]See the edit, tis late in these parts.[/quote]lol I understood what you were saying, dude. Yeah, people do like compare one person's shit to another. Hah, jk, I do like the Used actually, just not this record.

ToWhatEnd
June 15th 2007


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

That sucks they let you down maybe it will grow on you. If I would have reviewed this the first day or two I got it I would have given it a 3. But everyone is different so you never know. *is crashing*

Fort23
June 15th 2007


2475 Comments


Yea I have to admit, even though I did a positive review for it, I'm starting to get sick of it. Their first album was the best.

thakey
July 12th 2007


19 Comments


Not a bad album, but gets a bit repeditive. Paralyzed is an awesome song though.

myapology
July 20th 2007


3 Comments


i thought this album was a disappointment but "Liar Liar (Burn In Hell)" has to one if not the best song the Used have produced.



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