Review Summary: Don't be judgemental on the fact that they sound similar to Staind, it is a great listent that you won't be let down with.
Smile Empty Soul is a trio from Santa Clara, California. They were still in high school when they got together to start playing. Sounding somewhat like Staind, but keeping enough originality to stand apart from other bands, they released three singles from their Smile Empty Soul
album. It is their only album until October 24, 2006, when they release Vultures
. With SES only having one album out at the moment, it is kind of hard to compare it to anything. From this first CD, it is a decent, yet promising start for the rock trio from California.
Smile Empty Soul:
Sean Danielson: Vocals/Guitar
Ryan Martin: Bass
Derek Gledhill: Drums
By first listening to the band, and all the topics involved, there is one thing to be straight. A band can sing about this stuff and not be an Emo group. People of all ages can listen to this and find something good out of it. The three singles that have been released from this album are not what you should judge the album on. These three singles are good, but this CD has much better songs on it besides the singles. These singles are entitled Bottom Of A Bottle, Silhouettes,
and Nowhere Kids
, with Nowhere Kids being the most recognizable and controversial on the CD. These three songs are also the three opening tracks to the album, and do a nice job of setting the stage for the album.
Smile Empty Soul is well known for their superb job of writing acoustic songs. Some of the highlights include This Is War, With This Knife
, which is the most depressing song on the CD, and I Want My Life
. The acoustic guitar might be simple, but the way he sings around the guitar melodies is just great, and even on songs like This Is War, they added extra instruments like the violins to add to the effect. That song is pretty straightforward in the message, and is one of the better ones on the CD. Smile Empty Soul is also very good at using the clean tones of the guitar, noticed mainly on the song For You, and Silhouettes
. For You is my personal favorite song off of the CD, mainly because of the slow but steady beat. You could call it the ‘electric ballad’, when compared to all of the acoustic songs. The message is simple as well, saying that he would do anything for you, so to speak.
Don’t judge these guys just on slow and acoustic songs, they do have some hard rock hits. With songs like Nowhere Kids, All My Problems, Therapy
and Your Way
, this makes for a great variety of songs and you won’t be complaining about hearing the same type of song over and over again. There is one extremely controversial song on the album, and that is Every Sunday
. It talks about hypocrisy, and gives you a very good view on their perspective. A Must listen on this CD.
All in all, Smile Empty Soul did a great job on their Self Titled debut, and could have done better. There are a few solos in this album as well, so you will get a variety. Sean does a good job at mixing up the singing and screaming on the CD, so his voice won’t get tiring, at least not for a while.
It tends to be repetitive after the first few listens, but always listening to this every once in a while won’t hurt. SES did a nice job on a great CD.
All My Problems