To preface this review, and maybe shed some light on my musical upbringing, I would like to state that I am, and always will be, a sucker for any sort of post-hardcore music. The only thing that seemed to stick with me through my middle school follies was my love for music I know I should not be enjoying. Even in its most watered down form, I find myself tapping my feet or screaming along track after track. Even as I realize the songs I’m listening to have no music merit, not even an iota of creativity, I still find myself enjoying most of the music this genre has to offer. Now I’m sharing this as a means to hopefully let the essence of this review better serve its purpose… That, even in the eyes of this jadedly biased reviewer, with their debut album The Disconnect, Built On Secrets have created an unbelievably dull, tepid, and uninspired record.
Showing immense potential with their first E.P. Built On Secrets, burst onto the scene in 2010 with soaring melodies and inspiring songs. But with the release of their lead single “Surrender” earlier this month, the shift in the musical ideology towards poppier influences became clear as the song abused the word “we”, and displayed the first offering of a seemingly more pop-punk effort from the young band. The rest of the album does not fare much better than the horrendously clichéd album opener, as through the remaining ten tracks listeners are subjected to unoriginal song structures, characterless guitar leads, over bland palm-mutes, and tedious electronics rearing their unfocused heads at exactly the wrong moments. But amidst the mediocrity, tracks such as “Breathless” and “Recover/Recovery” show inklings of the band that graced Reflections, as the quicker tempo and undeniably catchy choruses of these two tracks act as a silver lining on an album that does not live up to the expectations surrounding it.
The Disconnect is an album you have heard before. That much is certain. And while there are occasional sparks of creativity and charm, they are too few and far between to create any sort of replay value. Leads blend into each other and the vocals grate on listeners for The Disconnect’s 11 tracks. Thankfully not a single song eclipses the 4 minute mark, making for a mercifully short listen. With every corner boasting a different cliché, it seems that this debut does not realize the potential of Built On Secret’s E.P and while this is only the first full length offering from this Australian quintet, it oozes mediocrity and complacency, not boding well for this young bands future endeavors.
Upon first listen I'm not hating this as much as everyone else seems to be. Sure it's super generic but it's solid none the less. I don't know, I guess I have a bit of a soft spot for these guys but I'm leaning toward a 3 or 3.5 right now. Great review though atrink!