Hopesfall is an interesting name for a band. You’d think it would imply the music surrounding the name would be depressing. Truth be told, Hopesfall’s music is the complete opposite of depressing, and instead more uplifting than anything else. A Types would be the third LP for the band, and is a major change from their previous record, Satellites. The sound of the two records is completely different, and it is now hard to qualify what genre Hopesfall belongs to. Although post-hardcore has, and always will be the most fitting description of them.
One of the more note-worthy changes in A Types is it’s more commercial, but not in a negative way. Frontman Jay has mainly caused this by no longer screaming, and instead, sings softly, as well as melodically. This works fantastically for the band, because if it weren’t for his voice, A Types wouldn’t be the superb record it is. Even though he screams no longer, he still induces what I’d refer to as a throaty wail at times. “Icarus" is one of the tracks on A Types where he does this, and it is also the standout of the whole album. The song explodes straight into the first chorus at the beginning with barely any warning at all. In that first thirty-seconds of the song is where perhaps highlight of the entirety of A Types lays. Every instrument shines. The harmonized guitar that lays hidden, although audible. Pounding drums that are brought higher into the mix, which perhaps gives the song a raw feel. Then there is the other guitar, which is playing basic, but still incredibly melodic riffs. Even the bass is there, grooving all the way, which I love. Of course, there is also Jay’s flawless singing. Singing well-written lyrics. “I’ll put you back in your place. At a thousand miles you’d find out we are empty. And if I wrote out all our sins, it’d read a thousand lies, and show us we are empty."
“The Ones" is the second best track on A Types. The guitar harmony during the verses is beautiful. The simple bass playing helps to relax the mood, as does Jay’s clean vocals. Although that changes whenever he screams “us by" at the end of the pre-chorus, which leads into every instrument coming in heavily for a whirlwind of a chorus, while the one guitar still keeps the translucent, single-note harmonization. Come to think of it, that single-note guitar harmony actually maintains a constant presence throughout the entirety of the record from the lead guitar. While the lead guitar is never technical, it is still entertaining enough, and the structure that it, and most of the other songs are written is simply jaw dropping. “Matchmakers Haven" is easily the heaviest song for A Types, but is still melodic at many times. The intro to the album is fast guitars playing the same repeating riff before going into the standard Hopesfall song (one guitar playing lead, the other playing riffs in the background). The final song on A Types seems to be an attempt to write a post-hardcore “ballad". “Per Sempre Marciamo" reminds me of the Deftones song, “Change", which is mainly for the few second interludes in the song that has Jay whispering before jumping into an amazing chorus. “I want to see in your eyes, your dilated eyes. Die criminal, die criminal, die criminal die."
The fact that each song has something unique to offer is what helps make A Types a fantastic listen. Whether lyrics, vocals, guitar harmonization, song structure, tempo, or how each instrument interacts with the other, A Types is indeed both welcome, and entertaining. It simply can’t be told how rewarding it is to hear an album that has nothing holding it back. The fact that I write music inspired only by this record should be a clear sign of how high in regard I hold it. The song structure of many songs is impeccable, and the whole album is never boring. Each instrument has it’s own job in the system, and stands out for it. Thus I can’t impress upon any of you enough that you need this if you want any type of alternative/post-hardcore album.
Pretty good review. I didn't mind this album despite everyone else throwing the sell out card. The music is the same, just less screaming. The Satellite Years is still better though. The best tracks are "Per Siempre Marciamo," "The Ones (that outro is so amazing)," and "Matchmaker's Heaven (the vocal harmony during the chorus is one of the best I've ever heard)."
"[M]ore commercial." It may be more commerical but you're getting your causailty messed up in the phrasing. They're not more commercial because they aimed to be that way but Jay decided that on the album he wanted to sing and that's just the way it was going to be. Commerciality was a side effect and is very subjective at that.
I really didn't like this. Review is ok...don't agree with much about it though. The CD is certainly not one of my favourites. I personally think they have slipped long way from their once promising stature. This Message Edited On 02.24.06
Tam-Tam you should listen to this album few times first.. then it will grow on you.. When i first heard it, i was like meh.. boring But after a couple listens, you'll realize that this is not the same hopesfall, instead of kicking our ass with vicious screaming and breakdown, they swap our feet with beautiful melodies and Jay's emotional (couldn't find better word for it, sorry) singing...
Its just not my thing. Again like the FBTMAF comment...it really isn't my thing right now. I kind of prefered the raw side of Hopesfall, more than this. I liked the anger and emotion present...and I felt that was better conveyed through the harsher sound whith even Satelite Years had a touch of.
I just couldn't get into this.
I appreciate the counter-view though. Thanks.
[quote=DFelon204409]"[M]ore commercial." It may be more commerical but you're getting your causailty messed up in the phrasing. They're not more commercial because they aimed to be that way but Jay decided that on the album he wanted to sing and that's just the way it was going to be. Commerciality was a side effect and is very subjective at that.[/quote]I know that they didn't mean to open to broader audiences on purpose, and I knew the reason why Jay sung from your review, but it still is commercial.
Thanks for the feedback all.
I don't like the sound they took on this album, and it really just comes off as kind of generic radio rock. Some of it is catchy, but it's just not an album I want to listen to on a regular basis, and nothing really sticks out. I have to say, I was extremely dissappointed.
It really grew on me over time. Like it was already mentioned, when you expect something like Satellites your destined for disappointment. But if you give this one a chance it can provide some great hearing pleaures.
Good review, though I have to agree with DFelon. I don't think they said "Hey let's get a share of the cake all those emo-wannabes are getting, let's commercialise".
[quote=Damgod]Good review, though I have to agree with DFelon. I don't think they said "Hey let's get a share of the cake all those emo-wannabes are getting, let's commercialise".[/quote]Thanks, but once again, I know that's not why they Jay started singing, it's because he wanted to.
[quote=DFelon204409]Ya but you complain about it as if his choice was somehow inappropriate. I think he's a sensational singer. Really original. In fact I wrote a whole review about it![/quote]
[quote=review]One of the more note-worthy changes in A Types is it’s more commercial. Frontman Jay has mainly caused this by no longer screaming, and instead, sings softly, as well as melodically. This works fantastically for the band, because if it weren’t for his voice, A Types wouldn’t be the superb record it is.[/quote]
Um, are we reading the same review?This Message Edited On 02.26.06
Saying "complain" is an exaggeration of "you used the word 'commercial' fully knowing its negative connotations thus giving me the impression that you think his choice to sing was inappropriate." I was drunk so ya. I didn't wanna write it all out.
I haven't really seen alot more kids (scene kids or other) jocking Hopesfall since this CD. I think the music is more or less the same as TSY, save for being a little poppier and focusing more on the melodic parts than the heaviness but it doesn't have the cheesy over produced screaming or other characteristics of these scene, popcore bands.
[quote=DFelon204409]Saying "complain" is an exaggeration of "you used the word 'commercial' fully knowing its negative connotations thus giving me the impression that you think his choice to sing was inappropriate." I was drunk so ya. I didn't wanna write it all out.[/quote]I never considered being "more commercial" in a negative context, but I guess that it would be insinuating that. I'll put some notes in the review about what I exactly mean when saying A Types is more commercial than TSY.