Review Summary: Not a bad album by any means, but the music contained barely resembles Funeral for a Friend aside from the odd moments.
I'm a pretty big fan of Funeral for a Friend (if you haven't gathered that already). Yeah, sure, you could argue that they do nothing new musically, but they are very good at what they do best: which is playing Post Hardcore which is as melodic as it is brutal. They were my introduction to the Post Hardcore genre at the age of 15, and their debut album, 'Casually Dressed and Deep In Conversation' is my favourite album of all time. They have influenced several bands in the UK Rock Scene, and are my main influence in terms of my guitar playing and song writing. However, while they are known for their Melodic Post Hardcore sound, if 'Tales Don't Tell Themselves' was the first album you listened to by them you would get a completely different impression of the band.
When I was getting into the band, I initially avoided listening to 'Tales Don't Tell Themselves'. I had heard the track 'Into Oblivion (Reunion)', and I thought it was an alright song, but I had avoided it since I had heard things about it that put me off listening at first. However, I eventually decided to listen to it as a fan of the band, and while it's by no means a bad album, it is a lot different to the rest of the bands discography, and for the most part, it barely resembles the band.
One thing to note about this album is that it's a concept album about a fisherman lost at sea. Doesn't sound very interesting at all, and at times, the music is about as interesting as it's concept, but with that aside, this album is pretty good, although different. It doesn't stand up to songs such as 'Juneau', 'This Years Most Open Heartbreak', 'Escape Artists Never Die', and 'Streetcar' from the bands earlier material, nor does it stand up to stuff like 'Front Row Seats To The End Of The World' or 'Broken Foundation' from the bands latest album 'Welcome Home Armageddon', but it is still good in it's own right.
The lead single and opening track 'Into Oblivion (Reunion)' is a decent opening, although if you're a fan of the band it does get annoying at times (much like the rest of the album) due to how much it stands out if played alongside the rest of the bands material. 'Out Of Reach' is the closest this album gets to the Funeral for a Friend of old, and 'One For The Road' is pretty good as well, a slowish song. 'The Great Wide Open' is another great song.
The rest of the album, however, while not bad, just isn't really noteworthy. The two part 'All Hands On Deck' is alright, although it's a tad ambitious, and single 'Walk Away' is pretty catchy, but asides from that, pretty standard fare. The main problem I have with it is that the aggression of the bands earlier material isn't really present here, and this album really lacks that bite which made the band famous in the first place.
Overall, this album is a decent album if you take it for what it is, and you don't view it as an album by Funeral for a Friend. It's not as good as the bands earlier material, and it's a lot different, but it's not a bad album. If you're a fan of the band, I'd say that you should check this out, but you might get a little annoyed about the more accessible sound that the band have presented on this album. If you aren't a fan but want to give the band a spin, however, I'd recommend starting off with the bands debut album, 'Casually Dressed & Deep In Conversation' or their most recent album 'Welcome Home Armageddon' first to get more of an idea of what the band's sound is like. If you aren't a fan and are just looking for a soft rock album, however, you might like this.
Into Oblivion (Reunion)
The Great Wide Open
Out Of Reach
One For The Road