Review Summary: A Day to Remember has created an energetic and super catchy album that rarely fails to impress.
Hailing from Ocala, Florida, A Day to Remember is one of those bands that seem to hit instant popularity. All that popularity kicked in with the release of their second studio release, For Those Who Have Heart. A Day to Remember (ADTR) does what they're good at, making fast paced, intense music. In an interview with Jeremy McKinnon, the vocalist of ADTR, he states that "we loved pop punk bands, we loved hardcore bands, and we wanted to make music we always wanted to hear, so we mixed them together". With this album especially, the band shows it's talent in mixing the two genres, they go from a fun and catchy chorus, to a foot stomping breakdown in a matter of seconds. It's not just this though, they manage to make the breakdowns intricate and tough, while keeping the choruses fun and easy to sing along to.
With every release ADTR puts out, they change they're sound just a little bit, but not enough to completely think differently of the band. The bands first release, And Their Name Was Treason, was a little heavier and darker. Homesick, the band's newest release, is clean and poppy, but still featuring the breakdowns we all love and know. No matter what this band does, they manage to stay catchy and at the same time, bring out moments of completely insanity. Fast Forward to 2012, the intro to FTWHH, shows exactly what the band is going to be bringing to the table. "My friends come first/ thats the bottom line" is shouted and screamed throughout, ending with a very heavy breakdown. This is basically what to expect through the entire album, but don't give up on them just yet.
Speak of the Devil shows just how catchy the band can get, and the chorus to this song is excellent. Jeremy McKinnon, the vocalist, is mainly good at his lower screams, at times they can be understood but that's rare. His singing voice is solid though, and he does a great job through the entire album. One thing you instantly notice about the breakdowns are the build-ups. ADTR is known for using the drums and guitars to lead into the breakdown, they usually play the beat of the breakdown. These build-ups work at times though, preparing you for something great. In The Danger in Starting A Fire, the band shows it's talent with breakdowns. This is one of the shorter, well known songs off of the album. Drummer Alex Shelnutt is simple, using his china most of the time backed with a very simple bass beat.
The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle is probably the most known song off of the album, and it's probably the catchiest song you'll hear from them. Jeremy flexes between his singing and screaming, while the guitars riff their way through verses, this all combines with the somewhat good lyrics to create what is actually, a very good song. The end of the song is the greatest though, while Jeremy sings/talks out, "I'll make my stand right here with my friends", you can't help but sing along. Then, the breakdown starts and suddenly you find yourself banging your head to the beat. One of the softer songs on the album is Monument, very easy to remember and sing along to, it's just so catchy and well done.
At this point in the album, you get the point, the band loves breakdowns and they know how to be catchy. The problem at this point is that the rest of the album feels more like filler than anything, we get put through more breakdowns and eventually find ourselves enjoying a few moments more than others. Songs like Show 'Em the Ropes and Start the Shooting feel like filler, there is really nothing that stands out in these songs. Then, A Shot in the Dark begins and everything changes. This song completely blows me away, just because it's so well done. It's extremely fast, features amazing breakdowns and completely manages to get your body moving. It's a song made for playing live, the perfect song to mosh along to at almost every moment. I Heard It's the Softest Thing Ever is yet another song that manages to seperate itself from the rest. It's not overdosed on breakdowns or anything, but it's a well written track. "Just let me go for now I'll be just fine/ Dont ya know/ Now that I'm back on my own", is the chorus line, and it's so easy to sing along to. The lyrics are dark and personal, which makes it that much better.
A Day to Remember may be, at this point in they're career, overblown. Ask any scene kid about this band and instantly they'll confess they're love for this band. This album is absolutely amazing, and people may hate on me for this, but it's a great popcore album. Here is a band that blends two genres together almost perfectly, and to this day they still do a great job with it, but if you want to catch them at their peak of greatness, listen to this album. It's energetic, hard and fun, everything we love to hear in the genre.