Review Summary: brand new eyes, is not a record that will go down in history, but shows excellent music from a once cliche band.
The record label Fueled by Ramen does not have the best track record of producing top-notch bands, releasing albums by artists such as Panic! at the Disco, Cobra Starship, and Gym Class Heroes, hardly anyone worth a good listen. Though the label took their biggest step to bettering themselves in April of 2005, the month that Paramore signed on and the released their first album All We Know Is Falling
of July that same year. Although not a massive success, All We Know Is Falling
did produce some quality songs like Pressure
. It seemed to the people that Paramore was just another pop-punk knock off, with no real substance.
After some much needed musical practice, Paramore ventured in to the studio once more to create their sophomore album Riot!
. Released in 2007 Riot!
became the soundtrack of the summer for many teens, and though it broke them to the masses, they were still just a pop-punk band from a small Tennessee town. Musically Riot!
was a huge step forward from the first album but still lacked the substance of a band to be taken seriously, and not just another Fueled by Ramen train wreck.
Jumping in the studio for the third time Paramore readied their third album, brand new eyes
(type-set is claimed to be a homage to red-headed singer, Hayley Williams inability to use caps lock while typing.) No one was sure what exactly to expect due the recent rumors of a break up, but the fans picked up the album excitedly and put it in the player, and sat to hear what comes out.
Opening with track, Careful
, a song that sounds just like a typical Paramore style song, but much better; the dual guitars working excellent together, with Hayley’s elegantly loud vocals on top. The track is a wonderful, “hello!” from Paramore to the fans that sets the album off great. Followed by the first single of the album, Ignorance
, another track with the same feel as the first, with the ever so noticeable line, “Ignorance is your new best friend,” which in a way is what this album represents collectively.
The biggest sign of maturity on this album is the track Misguided Ghost
, a slowed down acoustic song that tones down the vocals creating a major contradiction to the rest of the album making it quite the standout. On both previous album Paramore has had slowed down songs, but this is the first that actually gets Hayley calmed down for a slow sing along. Misguided Ghost
is the song that shows what Paramore is coming to as a band, they have grown in many ways and they have outgrown every other band on their label, being the shining pop-punk god of the moment.
This is not to suggest though that brand new eyes
is a flawless album. Its biggest mistake is that its structured like a music sandwich, all the strongest tracks are the begining few, and ending few, the songs placed in the center just begin to all drag along and sound vaguely similar. The track Turn It Off
is opened by the lines, “I scraped my knees while praying ,” and the lyrics do not get much better throughout. Obviously, the weakest song being that the guitar is very boring, the vocals are far below Williams ability and the whole songs feels like listening to the leftover song from the All We Know Is Falling
Simply put, brand new eyes
is a bridging album. In the jump from a cliché pop-punk band, to a serious band with a purpose, this album is a snapshot mid-jump, and hopefully Paramore wont being hanging in the air much longer as and future releases are bound to be even better than this, that is if they can survive their own inner band drama first.