Review Summary: Yellowcard is back.
Yellowcard is back, and not just back. They are BACK. While keeping things more controlled than in Paper Walls, they have mastered mixing the violin with their style of rock. Their songwriting, lyrics, and musicianship in this album have clearly improved.
The opening track, The Sound of You and Me, starts the album off with what you'd think would be on Paper Walls: Sean's violin and the drums take over the intro, which isn't bad at all. But as the song moves along, you can tell the difference between albums. Chorus is great, and there is an instrumental-solo type thing during the bridge that I thought was really catchy. Great start for the album. 4/5
The second track and first single, For You, and Your Denial, carries on the violin-drum intro takeover, but is just as catchy as any other Yellowcard intro. There aren't many stellar parts to this song, it's just all around solid song on the album. This song kinda shows a more pop side to Yellowcard at the chorus. 3.5/5
With You Around, the third song on the album, doesn't have a violin-drum intro, almost no intro at all, but it really is an amazing song. This song is very hard not to sing along with, especially at the chorus. I liked the bridge. A lot. Shortest track on the album, but probably the best. 5/5
The fourth track, Hang You Up, is a change-of-pace ballad that is so simple, you don't see it coming. Ryan's vocals are great in this track. The violin comes in during the second verse and this track is perfect for those of you (like me) that love Yellowcard's ballads. You'd be thinking one of the best pop-punk albums of the year at this point. 4.75/5
Life of Leaving Home, the fifth track, was my favorite one the first time I heard the album. At this point, I don't know why it was, but that doesn't change that it is another great song. The song changes pace within itself a few times and, while far from being the best track on the album, it still is worth being recognized as a song that would've flourished in Lights and Sounds. 3/5
The sixth track, Hide, kinda brings the album halfway back down to earth. The chorus is still (of course) catchy, but the song overall is nothing special compared to the rest of the album. It will most likely appeal to some and not to others. 2.5/5
Soundtrack, the seventh track, sounds like With You Around and The Sound of You and Me mixed in very good fashion. The skill of each individual band member is highlighted well in this track with more guitar than most Yellowcard songs are used to and Ryan has some moments in the bridge where he sounds a bit like Alex from All Time Low. 4/5
The eigth track, Sing For Me, almost is almost too mellow with......uncatchiness? for my taste, but it's not like I would skip it if I was listening to the album. This track has it's moments, but it is my least favorite on the album, which still means it's good. 2.5/5
See Me Smiling is the ninth track on the album. This song is easy to love and very catchy. Drums are the real highlight in this track. This song shows how much Yellowcard has mixed lyrics with catchy violin playing while keeping unexaggerating. 4/5
Be The Young, the tenth and final track on the album, is a magnificent blend of a Yellowcard ballad and a typical Yellowcard song. They get fancy with the electric guitar at one point during the intro, and the same piece is played again during the chorus. The song has deep meaning while being, once again, simple. It changes pace near the end and ends a great album in grand splendour. 3/5
This album overall is the perfect mixture of all of Yellowcard's successful past albums. Song-by-song it's good, and as an album it's good. Gone are the days when some of Yellowcard's songs would only be recognized because of some catchy violin playing, this stuff is golden. Yellowcard's members have matured into what they hopefully will be for the rest of their career. Listen to this album if you haven't already.