Review Summary: This album is the turning point of a band that is looking for it's identity.2 of 2 thought this review was well written
Vices is Dead Poetic’s third album and so far their best. After the release of their second album, New Medicine, Dead Poetic went trough an extensive change when bass guitarist Chad Shellabarger, drummer Josh Shellabarger, and guitarist Todd Osborn left the band. However, that change proved to be for the best by freeing them from the things that were holding them back, giving them chance to extend their musical boundaries, and to show that they are a serious band that are focus on making good music.
From the beginning it is noticeable how the band has moved from their previous sound in search for something new. The album opener, Cannibal VS. Cunning
, has a more metallic-hard rock feel to it than anything Dead Poetic has done before. With great strong guitar riffs, pounding drums, and hard heavy vocals this track is a good example of how they extended their musical boundaries. The next track, Lioness
, is the same style as the first track but with a faster pace. It is catchy, but it drags and it is not up to the standard of the album. Now after listening to these two tracks you might be thinking something along the lines of “so this is the type of sound that Dead Poetic chose to follow”, but if that’s the case then you’ll be mistaken.
One of the highlights of the album, the third track Self-Destruct And Die
, changes the pace established in the first two songs. It goes back to Dead Poetic’s older sound, although not completely. It is slower and more melodic with excellent vocals, and an impressive wall of sound that makes it one of the best tracks. Just as fast as the band reminded us that they haven’t forgotten their roots, they change the style again with the song Narcotic. The best songs of the album, Narcotic
has a classic rock and roll sound around it, you just can’t help but move and dance when you listen to it. I never though Dead Poetic could ever pull a song like this off, but they did it perfectly.
By explaining the first four songs of the album I mean to show that Vices never stands still. Song after song it keeps changing, sometimes more punk, others more hard rock, there is also straight rock and a little alternative, Pretty Pretty
brings a poppier sound, and some songs go back a little to their previous album the most noticeable being The Victim
. All this constant change brings a problem because it feels like too much too fast, and there isn’t quiet something to hold on to. By themselves most of the songs are really good with a couple of bland uninspired moments spread trough the album, but when you are listening to the album as a whole it changes too much. It is good that there is variety, but Vices goes a little too far. The album doesn’t have something that holds it together and that makes it unique as it seems that Dead Poetic is trying different styles in order to figure out in which way to go in the future.
On the other hand, the band demonstrates that they have the ability to work with different style and that they do it well. In this album they go from one style to the next successfully working them and proving their amount of musical range. It is evident the amount of musical improvement that the new members brought to the band and how one can feel the emotion and the intensity in the vocals. The ever present beautiful melodies that Dead Poetic has always maintained have now improved in an amazing fashion, playing during the whole album in a way that can’t be ignore. Even their lyrics are more mature and though out than before.
Overall, Vices is to be a turning point album for a band that is looking for a specific road to follow. Great on its own account, it is a reflection that this band is serious about their music and once they find their comfort zone they can be a strong musical force. It is a fun and catchy album that it’s too long for its own good, lasting over one hour, and that has too much variety. If Dead Poetic can find their unique sound and keep this sort of improvement and good music I for one can’t wait to listen to their next album.
Self-Destruct And Die