Review Summary: Don't Worry Lady isn't a pinnacle of metalcore, but it's a refreshing listen all the same."We weren't metal enough for the metal kids to like us, and we weren't hardcore enough for the hardcore kids"
Or so claims I Hate Sally frontwoman, Dee Prescott. In a way, she's right. Though the Kingston, Ontario natives' music is rooted in metalcore, they don't quite kick you in the face with the same intensity of a Converge or Botch. Likewise, the stigmata of the "-core" suffix will unfortunately scare off the majority of traditional metal fans. But regardless of whether or not they're accepted by the in-groups of the respective genres they take influence from, I Hate Sally manages to get the job done. And in their 2006 album, Don't Worry Lady
, the Canadian quartet's sophomore effort makes for not only a quality record, but also for a refreshing listen.
While Don't Worry Lady
may be lacking in the sporadic mathcore field, much of the album still maintains a harsh, aggressive demeanour. "Hannah Hannah" and "Bathsheba of Seven" are two of I Hate Sally's rawer moments, and both rely on the band's forceful, energetic song structures and Prescott's roars. However, Don't Worry Lady
doesn't exclusively feature the violent sound stressed in the previously mentioned songs. "Song of Deborah", for example, opens with slow, sludgy riffing before cleverly placed double bass kicks the song into overdrive. Without sounding too pretentious, the song is easily one of the more epic moments the album has to offer, not only due to the anthematic main riff, but also the way the song's build-up seamlessly transitions between brooding and slow to aggressive and menacing. Even more impressive are "Iscah's Life" and "Anna's Empty Conscious For the Blessed". As album's two longest songs (the former clocks in at 8:56 while the later is 9:51), they showcase I Hate Sally's song writing talent, allowing the band to slightly experiment with their music. Both tracks incorporate a myriad of different styles and movements – "Iscah's Life" turns off the heaviness completely halfway through the song, and the tapping interlude six minutes into "Anna's Empty Conscious For the Blessed" is particularly fun. Segueing from "Iscah's Life", "Iscah's Cancer" is the only song on Don't Worry Lady
not to feature some sort of distorted riff. However, I Hate Sally doesn't exactly go soft on the listener, as the track retains the foreboding sound emphasized earlier on.
Though much of Don't Worry Lady
upholds the metalcore aesthetic, one of its greatest traits stems from the album's replay value. The album is quite engaging throughout its forty-three minute runtime, and never really loses its edge. While I Hate Sally might not be in the top tier of metalcore just yet, with further successes such as Don't Worry Lady
, it shouldn't be long until they're there. Well, hopefully anyways.