Review Summary: Attack Attack!, lead by new frontman Caleb Shomo, fails at becoming "heavier", and instead dwells in a mess of genre confusion and poor musicianship.
Today was an exciting day for scene kids everywhere. Today, Attack Attack! (not to be confused with the halfway decent British rock band "Attack! Attack!") streamed their sophomore, full length album released under Rise Records on the band's Myspace. The band is now fronted by screamer Caleb Shomo, which is something I am not very happy about, because the only redeeming quality of Someday Came Suddenly (for me at least), was Austin Carlile's vocal performance. The album is self-titled, and to no surprise, it was produced by metalcore's new favorite producer, Joey Sturgis. I will be honest, I like some of Sturgis's work (Burden of a Day's "Oneonethousand", TDWP's "With Roots Above and Branches Below", etc.), but more than often, he will over-process a band to the point that the vocals are flooded with autotune, and become almost indistinguishable, not to mention painful to listen to. This is obvious in most of the songs of the album, which (for the most part), follow the same structure consisting of "brutal" breakdowns alternating with poppy, processed clean vocals delivered by guitarist and singer Johnny Franck, backed by bouncy techno beats.
In some cases for the band, this formula seems to work. The album opens up fairly strongly, with probably two of the best songs of the record, "Sexual Man Chocolate" and "Renob, Nevada", both of which the band released earlier on their Myspace. These songs contain some pretty cool synth samples, like in the intro to "Sexual Man Chocolate" which features a piano rapidly ascending and descending up a very minor sounding scale, which gives the song a nice vibe. However, if you know anything about Attack Attack!, you'll know that they love to try to squeeze a breakdown into every song, regardless of how well it fits. This is something that can be observed throughout the album, not excluding these two tracks. This is really their only downfall, apart from the excessively poppy chorus melodies, which I am personally not a fan of; otherwise, they are two strong tracks to open the album.
Now that I've spent so much time covering the first two songs of the album, you're probably thinking, "This doesn't sound so bad..."; unfortunately, from the third track on, the album becomes progressively less coherent, and there are some very, very laughable moments. The third track, "I Swear I'll Change" is a very average sounding post-hardcore song, with alternating screamed and clean vocals, and absolutely nothing about it stood out to me. The next song is where the album really starts to go downhill. "Shut Your Mouth" is an embarrassing culmination of rapped vocals delivered by McSwagger (yeah, I don't know who he is either), and sickeningly autotuned vocals with techno beats playing throughout the song. Upon hearing this song, I was truly confused, wondering how a Metro Station song ended up in the middle of Attack Attack!'s album stream - but I guess the band really has no hope of ever being a respected name in the metal community, because decisions to include hip-hop-esque tracks like these will forever keep AA! labeled as a "joke band".
The rest of the album blended together horribly for me, and it seemed like a really bad attempt at sounding like Bring Me the Horizon's "Suicide Season", with random electronic parts thrown in. "AC-130" is a roughly two minute long track, rumored to be a shot at the band's former frontman and screamer, Austin Carlile, and it is nothing more than 2 minutes of forced breakdowns and blatant attempts at sounding "brutal", by chanting oh-so-badass lyrics such as "You're better off dead!". Nothing throughout the end of the album stood out (in a good way at least), and it ended on a failed attempt at a ballad titled "Lonely", which featured vocalist Jason Cameron of the metalcore band Bury Tomorrow, who made up for the lack of Attack Attack!'s talent with a strong vocal performance. Nonetheless, the album ends weakly, and I will be honest, I was more than glad it was over.
Deviant- I get that, but did someone really need to post this review, which pretty much re-hashes everything the other reviews have stated? That's all I'm saying. If it said something different or gave a different rating instead of from a 1 to a 3, I'd be okay. But it's the same review as the other 20 I've seen today.
Lol, I'm not saying he did, although how would any of us know what he did. All I'm saying is this read the same as the other ones I have read today. So did the one before that. And the one before that. And the one before that.
And I'm not saying it's a bad review at all. It's a pretty good review and I agree with the rating. I'm just saying why not find something else to review? Or wait a day or two? Don't water down the front page with the same review that was written 20 minutes before.
Deviant- I'm just expressing an opinion, that's all. Y'all don't have to agree with it, I am just personally tired of seeing the same review with the same rating with the same reasons on the front page, that's all.