Review Summary: Second Chances
After a career that has lasted over 10 years, Cartel has released 4 full lengths and 2 EPs. The success of their debut Chroma
has put them on the spotlight as one of the most important pop-punk acts in the year 2005. Ever since the release of Chroma
, expectations for Cartel have been high, and as a result, many fans were disappointed with what came after.
Fast forward to the year 2013. With 3 albums released already, Cartel has since left the record label behind, and released their 4th full length titled Collider
on their own. Although it would be near impossible for this band to create an album that parallels Chroma
, this album is an indicator that they can still come very, very close.
is an album that retains the nostalgic sound found within Chroma
, as well as powerful sound they created in Cycles
, their 3rd full length. The album is full of tight vocal harmonies, fun guitar jams, catchy choruses, and littered with common tones to create their classic nostalgic sound. The lyrics are more mature, and the instrumentation is tasteful and clever.
When I started listening to the album for the first time, I had certain expectations. I expected a repeat of Cycles
or a failed recreation of Chroma
. Instead, I found something far more interesting and involved. I reached the song “Mosaic”, and it dawned on me what I was really hearing. This was an album with zero fillers and a collection of songs that seamlessly flowed from one to the next.
I finished the album without disappointment, and as the song “A Thousand Suns” faded out, repeating the bridge of Uninspired (“Put all emotion aside, no matter how hard you try. Take what is buried inside. You want it, you got it, goodbye.”), I realized how important this album was to the Cartel discography. Collider
is the best album to come from Cartel since Chroma
, and could potentially be seen as their definitive work in later years.