Review Summary: The Current Will Carry Us is a brilliant album that portrays an underlying message of positivity, and those who embrace it will see it as more than just an album.
Life is something that comes with millions upon millions of personal questions and arguments that people debate and talk about daily, most of which being subjective questions that no one person is going to ever really have a "correct" answer to. What does it truly mean to be an optimist? One may argue that it's acting like nothing is really wrong regardless of any situation, circumstance, or event. One also may argue that your actions don't play as a factor as to whether or not you see the glass as half empty or full, but instead embracing the emotions that come with negative events and just having a "hope for the best, expect the worst" attitude internally. Everybody has their own struggles that they have to deal with, and everybody feels pain with these struggles. Everybody deals with their pain differently, and everybody has their own methods of dealing with their problems, whether it be through art, writing, hobbies, or things that or more personal. Who's to say that any one person is right when labeling themselves as a pessimist or an optimist? It's not like there is a "cure" for sadness, and it's not like everybody thinks and reacts the same way to things. Counterparts' 2010 release, Prophets
, was an album that basically threw positivity in your face and made the band come across as a band that stayed positive regardless of any circumstance. Blending a lot of metalcore elements while maintaining the energy of a hardcore band, Prophets
was without a doubt a more than impressive debut from Counterparts, and while not being a perfect debut, it most definitely made fans of the genre intrigued as to how Counterparts would maintain their success with their sophomore release, The Current Will Carry Us
. The Current Will Carry Us
is the perfect example of embracing sadness through beauty and an underlying message of positivity, all the while not being afraid to show that nobody can just be "positive" all the time.
From the extremely subtle click track at the beginning of opening track "The Disconnect," to the final fading notes of the end of final track "Reflection," it is quite clear that Counterparts is back, angrier, and just as(if not more) energetic as they were on Prophets
. While those who were expecting a Prophets Part 2
may be disappointed, there is something here to love for everyone. Counterparts still has most of the elements that made their debut so impressive, but with a very accented "melodic hardcore" edge that was more prominent on their two song split EP with Exalt. The album flows brilliantly, and shows elements of grief, happiness, spirituality, optimism, and pessimism, all the while carrying the underlying message of positivity that acts sort of as a crutch in a fair amount of songs. There is much to be said about a band that is able to portray emotions near perfectly through more than just their lyrics. How could anybody not feel at least slightly optimistic after hearing the deepest and darkest demons in song form with such a fighting attitude? This is exactly what Counterparts aim for with their music, and while it can come across to some as obscure, it is a very big factor as to how Counterparts has become so successsful so quickly. It is a formula that is so perfect for them because they are so talented at executing it near flawlessly.
Instrumentally, The Current Will Carry Us
will not disappoint fans of their debut. All of the "how in the hell did they come up with this" melodic lead parts and chord progressions are all still here, but what separates this from their debut is that they have so much more depth and importance in this album. See the last minute and a half of track three, "The Constant," for what very well be the best example of this. "The Constant" is a near perfect representation of The Current Will Carry Us
as a whole, and Counterparts does not come near failing with the execution of their songwriting with this song. The crescendos are huge, the vocal delivery is extremely strong, and the lyrics are those that anybody could relate to. While "The Constant" may be the song that represents this album as a whole, this release is so versatile(lyrically) that a listener would have to listen to more than just this song to begin to understand the beauty that is layered throughout this album. Track two, "I Am No One," is the most impressive song instrumentally, and while it may only be a very short one minute and forty seven seconds, it still acts as an album highlight. Tracks such as "I Am No One," "The Disconnect," and "Thank God" all portray the negative and angry side of Counterparts that wasn't quite as accented on Prophets
as it is on The Current Will Carry Us
. "Thank God" may very well be the angriest song that Counterparts has ever written, as Brendan Murphy screams "Thank God for never being there" on repeat as the song fades out. It is very clear that Counterparts doesn't fail to try and reach out to people without taking the risk of offending some in the process. That is just another reason that this album is so versatile, because it can relate to just about any listener who gives it a chance.
Now, as I was listening to this album for the first time, I had made it to track ten, "Sinking," with an already satisfied attitude, but I was also slightly disappointed that this album didn't feature a song that sounded like "Carpe Diem" from their debut. As the beginning of track eleven, "Reflection," began, my ears perked up slightly more as I started to wrap my mind around what exactly I was hearing. "Reflection" starts very quietly with what sounds like chords that were layered backwards and with reverb, but later comes in with a very simple guitar part that one could compare to "Carpe Diem," as it is very simple, yet extremely appealing to the ears. "Reflection" is without any ray of a doubt the highlight of this album, as it is the most powerful song that Counterparts has ever released, and could very well start appearing on "Best Songs Of 2011" lists. This song portrays how one with underlying insecurities may feel from a first person perspective, and the delivery is moving and near flawless. It is exactly what they were intending with "Carpe Diem," however the biggest factor as to how this is more impacting than "Carpe Diem" is that "Reflection" features vocals that come across as extremely desperate, yet very sincere.
So, with all of the factors that make The Current Will Carry Us
what it is, what exactly was Counterparts intending to make clear with this release? It is very clear that Counterparts still stands by their vivid positive message, however with this release it is more based off of portraying negative emotions as a way of comfort and unity. The album title The Current Will Carry Us
could very well be the best possible name they could have come up with for such an album, as the album title itself can be metaphorical for everything the album truly is, as it can be taken to mean something to the effect of with all of the negative things that happen to us in life, life will always go on. Counterparts have constructed a classic with this release, and for those who are looking for an album that has a chance to affect them in more ways than just any other album would, they should be directed to this album. If they keep evolving as they have proven that they are doing, than they could perhaps one day be talked about amongst the ranks of genre classics such as Shai Hulud and Misery Signals.
I Am No One
I never thought that I would need to justify a reason to continue on in this life I lead.
I ***ing hate the world
I ***ing hate myself, and I swore I’d never ***ing feel like this.