I See Stars
New Demons


4.5
superb

Review

by derpstinlikesmusic2 USER (3 Reviews)
August 1st, 2014 | 16 replies


Release Date: 10/22/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: An incredible album that just steers shy of being one of the best for 2013. If you get sick of it, you should seek help.

If you're looking for an album that you won't get sick of (at least, not right away), then New Demons is for you. After releasing their previous LP Digital Renegade, I See Stars went in a direction for New Demons that proved their maturity and growth as a musicians. In order to pick this album apart, I felt that a pro's and con's list would be easier to describe the aspects that will make you keep your headphones on and parts that may make you want to keep your finger on that skip button. I'll let you be the judge:

Pros:
1) The vocals have improved drastically. Devin Oliver is (and has been) a very impressive clean vocalist. However, in their previous work, I See Stars seemed to rely mainly on him rather than their unclean vocalist, Zach Johnson. Can Zach Johnson be compared to the heavy-hitting vocalists of today? Not exactly. But on New Demons, he adds emotion and intensity to songs (check out "New Demons", "Violent Bounce (People Like You)", "We're Not In Kansas Anymore"). The vocalist duties between Oliver and Johnson are evenly divided, and I think they did a phenomenal job adding those touches of emotion to their singing and screaming styles.
2) The programming on the album tells more of a story than they did on Digital Renegade. On DR, the programming was done more to give teens and "club kids" that techno feel that actually made the album less enjoyable, in my opinion. On New Demons, Andrew Oliver puts the right amount of programming and "dance beats" in songs that deserve them ("Murder Mitten", "New Demons"). In other words, this album is still heavy while using dabs of dubstep and club beats to give that extra shot of aggression or anguish. Well done!
3) The feel for New Demons is more personal to each of the band members. Most bands these days write their music based on the theme of brotherhood and standing up for yourself and friends. While this dish is a tasty treat, it's becoming a bit overcooked the more you prepare it. After listening to this album countless times, New Demons is mainly a venting session for each of the members. For example, "Violent Bounce" is a simple ***-you directed towards a certain member of Falling in Reverse for kicking them off of a tour. "Murder Mitten" is Devin and Andrew Oliver's therapeutic session to vent their frustration over their mother's alcoholism. "Boris the Animal" is a trip inside Zach Johnson's mind over his struggle with alcoholism and the demons that force him to keep drinking. I could go on and on; but the point is that each song is similar to a journal entry for each of the guys in the band.

Cons:
1) While the sound is crunchy and heavy, the guitars are pretty underwhelming. True, you can't do much when a band relies much on programming and synthesizers. But the album mainly consists of repetitive, chugging breakdowns or guitar parts that the boys on strings figured sound badass played more than once or twice in a song (I'm looking at you "Ten Thousand Feet"). I was hoping for more lead parts from lead guitarist Brent Allen that lasted for more than five seconds, but beggars can't be choosers.
2) I'll come out and say this: I absolutely HATE when albums have intro's or "interludes" of tracks that consist of absolutely no music. I consider it to be a waste of a perfectly good song that the band could show off. The opening track of the album ("Initializing Sequence") is literally only meant to kickstart the following track "Ten Thousand Feet". My suggestion? Use it specifically for live performances. If not that, blend it into the actual song for which it's trying to jazz up the listeners. Sure, "Ten Thousand Feet" is over five minutes long; but it beats having a minute-long song of nothing but computerized babble and blaring alert sirens. To each their own, I guess.

I suggest that if you are looking for a hard-driven, emotional rollercoaster of an album, you should pick up New Demons. I haven't stopped listening to this album - and I picked it up in October of 2013. It makes me crave more and hope for something even better for their upcoming album. That is, if they can do better than this wonderful album.


user ratings (209)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
FuggetAboutIt (1)
I SEE STARS are back angrier than ever and they’re ready to party. The question is, will you join ...

Jarred Gandel (4)
New Demons. Less Suck....


Comments:Add a Comment 
SnakeDelilah
August 1st 2014


7987 Comments


i don't need to listen to this to know that it sucks

Digging: Gates - Bloom and Breathe

bakkermaarten007
August 1st 2014


3601 Comments


I See Shit.

SnakeDelilah
August 1st 2014


7987 Comments


also 90% of this are pros and cons rather than an actual review neg

thelastsignal
August 1st 2014


1370 Comments


Okay, a few things:
-One review a day; posting more than one a day is essentially pushing someone else's review off the main page.

-I read through this, and it's actually well-written. You're a good writer, and you have a good voice for just starting out (at least on this site). You definitely don't want to structure reviews like this, though. What you are doing is making a list when this review would look much better in a paragraph form. The phrasing that you use here even includes transitional phrasings that make it seem like it was initially written like your first one.

ExplosiveOranges
August 1st 2014


3198 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Lol, Mark offering support like he always does. In all honesty, the summary alone is a pretty good reason to neg, but I'm in a good mood today, so I'll refrain.

Digging: Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2

DrJohn
August 1st 2014


489 Comments


A doctor is required to have steady hands, but my fingers started itching with the sum.

thelastsignal
August 1st 2014


1370 Comments


Lol Oranges. I see some potential here, but I had some good users (Atari, Vheissu, Ecnalzen) give me some positive feedback when I started here. It definitely encouraged me to keep going.

Betray
August 1st 2014


3630 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Great album

review is okay

work on your style, you could have said everything you said about this album in a better format than a list of pros and cons

Digging: Between the Buried and Me - Between the Buried and Me

thelastsignal
August 1st 2014


1370 Comments


Betray, you said what I said way more succinctly haha. Very nice man.

YoYoMancuso
August 1st 2014


11154 Comments


"If you get sick of it, you should seek help."

GodzillaFucker
August 1st 2014


12 Comments


Your avatar goes perfect with that quote YoYoMancuso.

But yeah this review sucks shit. And this album is nowhere near a 4.5.

DrGonzo1937
August 1st 2014


5980 Comments


Jesus, an album that Betray has rated that isn't a 1.5 lol

Digging: Ilenkus - The Crossing

Participation
August 1st 2014


26 Comments


'i see stars' , more like i see ass

Betray
August 1st 2014


3630 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yeah I actually dig these guys.
suck live tho and every song on thid album ends in a 50 second synthy breakdown

OwMySnauze
August 1st 2014


1068 Comments


I think something is wrong with my sput account... The rating average for this album is too high..?

Salvidian
August 1st 2014


752 Comments


In addition to what others have said, you write too informally at times.



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