Silverstein has drive; let that sink in. Their slogan is always on tour, and they sure is hell do not lie. I have had the privilege of seeing them twice in less than four months. Over the past few years they have built of quite a fan base. In fact, at both of the shows I saw them, they were co-headlining and when the headliner got on stage their crowd was noticeably smaller than Silverstein's; with good reason I might add. Silverstein is on Victory Records, easily one of the most ridiculed labels out there today for being bland, unoriginal and bland. Silverstein is none of those things. To me, Victory is only temporary for Silverstein as the band has the potential to move on to bigger and better things. When Broken Is Easily Fixed
is Silverstein's first release after signing to Victory and they have only improved since this album.
Shane Told - Vocals
Josh Bradford - Guitar
Neil Boshart - Guitar
Bill Hamilton - Bass
Paul Koehler - Drums
From the intro of Smashed Into Pieces
anticipation and excitement are present. Its build up is the perfect for the start of the album as Shane screams out the first few lines. His scream has its moments but for the most part is pretty mediocre in this album; definitely listenable nevertheless. The singing is much better. Shane has a great range which has only improved as time has gone on. The verse is a nicely done with a chord progression and a mix of screaming and singing. In the chorus it becomes obvious that Silverstein uses their two guitarists to their advantage. A nice riff plays throughout the chorus while the rhythm section holds it all together nicely. The chorus seems to grasp onto your brain and never let go, as it is very nicely done. Some more little leads are played toward the end of the song and Smashed Into Pieces
starts this album off on a good note.
Variety is shown right away as a clean riff opens up in Red Light Pledge
. Shane's vocal range is shown on this as the singing is great. However I feel the screaming brings it down. Some very fitting melodic guitar plays through the outro of this song. Not the best this disk has to offer at all. Giving Up
starts off at the same pace as the previous track but picks up on during the chorus. The chorus becomes a bit too repetitive and once again the screaming brings it down. Another soft intro courtesy of November
is upon us. The album has been at a much slower pace since its opener, which is not a bad thing at all. This is a good song, not too much to say about any instrument drastically sticking out aside from some nicely placed drum rolls towards the end. The vocals are great on both ends, the screaming fits in and everything else stays tight. The screaming at the very end does get a little tedious but overall November
is a great track. Last Days of Summer
follows the same slow first half and sped up last half formula as some of the preceding tracks. I like the flow and mood created by the verses and chorus. However the breakdown towards the end is a bit cheesy but is listenable at very least.
Time for a change, Bleeds No More
picks things up. The little riff played during the chorus is very nice, not over done but simple, fitting and effective. One major complaint is the songs slower clean part. It just does not feel right and I feel the song would have been stronger if it had kept its fast pace throughout. Not a bad song, but there are some flaws to pick at.
Ok Hear Me Out
gets its own paragraph. Right from the intro you know you are in for something cool. The perfect amount suspense is built by the effects until a clean riff and a bass drum come in. This song has so much going for it. The singing is excellent and seems to be the focal point of the song as the guitars form a tight rhythm section throughout the first verse and chorus. As the second verse comes in, some riffs are brought out perfectly complimenting Shane's vocals. The little bit of screaming present is sprinkled in very tastefully, and once again Shane shows his amazing range. The clean bridge in this song works much better than its previous attempt and a superb harmonized riff follows. One last chorus is sung over the harmonized riff ending one of the best songs on the record.
The Weak and the Wounded
opens clean but quickly has the silence sliced by screaming. This song goes back and forth between quiet singing and screaming for the first 35 seconds or so. I find it to be quite annoying actually. Around the first minute a pretty sweet riff comes through along with some pinch harmonics. Yes pinch harmonics, who said you had to be a metalcore band to use them anyways. After the intro the rest of the song is pretty enjoyable. There is a good deal amount of screaming towards the end but it is much better than in some of the previous songs. At this point in the record it is hard to tell whether the screaming is actually getting better or whether it is growing on the listener. Similar to the previous track Wish I Could Forget You
starts off with a clean guitar, much more upbeat however. The song drags on a bit but the clean guitar work is very enjoyable. The vocal presentation is a bit tedious thus the lugging on of the song.
When Broken Is Easily Fixed
opens heavy on the vocal front. Someone else I believe screams on this song, allowing for dual vocals to come through. They work fairly well overall but I am not a huge fan of the screaming here. The clean bridge works alright, does not fit the song all that great but is listenable. The ending drags on but some cool guitar harmonization is present. At the very end of the song the dual vocals reach a peak, sounding very nicely complimenting each other. Friends In Fall River
does not sound like a song Silverstein would right. That is more of a compliment than an insult as this is a very interesting song. Once again the guitar is praiseworthy throughout the song. The verse licks are extremely tasteful and add a nice touch to the song. Shane"s singing at the end sounds fantastic and even more great guitar is played under it, creating a very nice outro. This would have been a great song to end the record on.
The album closes with Forever and a Day
opening with great dual guitar work. The bass stands out on the intro creating one of the most enjoyable instrumentals of the album. No crazy guitar or bass is going on, it just all sounds very thought out and well placed and executed. This song sounds a little more depressing as a whole than most. The vocals are sung very well and the guitar remains consistent throughout. Overall this is a pretty good song but its placement is not very good. This would have been a much better song towards the beginning or middle of the album. In other words, I like the song just not the album ending on it.
With their Victory debut, Silverstein has done a very nice job. Their overall sound changed throughout the album as variety is shown, the guitars work great together, and the vocals are great for the most part. If you picked up this album expecting constant screaming and power chords you will either be disappointed or pleasantly surprised. The labels put on this band are very deceiving. Silverstein is a very talented band and more importantly they possess the drive it takes to be noticed. This being their first album is truly something, as they have only improved from here.
-two guitarists are very present and commendable throughout
-variety in sound and structure
-mood changes throughout the album add a nice touch
-some of the softer songs drag on
-the screaming is very mediocre at times
-drums do not stand out much
The bottom line with this album is that it is a great start for a very talented band. If you enjoyed this album and have not already picked up their latest release Discovering the Waterfront
you need to right away. Even if you were not a big fan of this record I think checking the new album or at least a few songs is a decent idea. If you are a fan of Hawthorne Heights you should definitely check this band out, they will most likely have you saying "Hawthorne who?" Overall this is a great release by the band and is recommended.
Final Rating 3