Review Summary: Severed Ties is a fantastic record, one that puts many of The Amity Affliction’s US counterparts to shame. Having debuted at number twenty-six in the Aria charts, it won’t be long before these guys are no longer Australia's little secret.
They’ve been threatening for a while, but the time has finally come for The Amity Affliction to step up and take what is rightfully theirs. After two well-received EP’s - the first being self released, the second seeing the light of day via Skull & Bones Records – this twelve-legged party machine has delivered the album that we all knew they were capable of creating.
Catchy (and dare I say it, pop) melodies, screamed lead vocals and thick, melodic riffs are the order of the day, with a subtle electronic element now being thrown into the mix, all of which pulls together to form one cohesive sound.
With a vocal contribution from Daylight Curse front man Helmet Roberts, the aptly titled “I Heart Roberts” gets things off to a great start, the song’s chorus giving the listener a taste of what the rest of the record has to offer. Not sure what “B.D.K.I.A.F.” stands for and to be honest, who gives a *** when the music is this good. Featuring another monster melody and some metal styled guest vocals from Lochlan Watt (The Surrogate), “Snitches Get Stitches” shows just far Amity’s song writing has come since their last release. There’s nothing worse than a band shying away from who they are, so it’s refreshing to hear a song like “Do You Party?” a track that loudly and proudly declares that the band aren’t too concerned by strangers having an opinion on their after show behaviour.
“Poison Pen Letters” first made an appearance on the State Of Affairs split that Amity were a part of in 2004, the song’s inclusion being more than justified by it’s catchier than a cold chorus and heavy mid-section. Lead single “Fruity Lexia” (goon must be big in Brisbane) is one of the strongest tunes the band has committed to record to date, with Ahren (Bass/clean vocals) taking the group’s already impressive songwriting to another level, while the haunting “So You Melted” shows off another side to the already multifaceted six-piece.
A demo of “Jesse Intense” was put online earlier this year, however the re-recorded version (with vocals from ex-IKTPQ vocalist/Big Brother star, Michael Crafter) is a far superior model to the original, while “The Blair Snitch Project”, my personal favourite, sees the band mixing Ahren’s soothing melodies with the punk beats of yesteryear. Now, I don’t want to spend too long dwelling on this, but Amity’s cover of “Love Is A Battlefield” is something I could have done without. I’m sure the band had their reasons, and no doubt the song will illicit a great response in the live setting, but I can’t help but feel it tarnishes an otherwise floorless record. Lucky then that the final tune is “Stairway To Hell”, with yet another guest vocalist making their presence felt, the person in question being Deez Nuts main-man JJ Peters.