Sick Puppies
Connect


3.0
good

Review

by humblerodent USER (29 Reviews)
January 31st, 2014 | 10 replies


Release Date: 2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: “Connect” is a flawed album kept afloat by Emma Anzai’s sporadic appearances and a few other gems sprinkled in here and there.

Sick Puppies thrives on tight-roping between two genres. The band’s first major-label record, “Dressed Up As Life,” (2007) played like a hard-rock album but contained enough angst under the surface to make pop-punk and emo music fans take notice. The group’s second album, “Tri-Polar,” (2009) mismanaged their two-part act, as the band drifted toward radio-friendly rock n’ roll and away from the raw emotion that made them so desirable in the first place.

The first single from their third album “Connect,” seemed to imply that Sick Puppies were continuing along the same unfortunate path they began on “Tri-Polar.” The song “There’s No Going Back” is a tepid affair that screams “please play me on the radio,” complete with an inoffensive and boring lead guitar riff and the same “whoa oh oh” backing vocals that plague every other mainstream rock release.

The entirety of “Connect” is a tad more convoluted. From the get-go, Sick Puppies comes out swinging with the grungy “Die to Save You,” which shines because male vocalist Shimon Moore shares the mic with female vocalist Emma Anzai. Anzai pops up throughout the album. In fact, the best track, the foreboding “Under a Very Black Sky,” wouldn’t sound nearly as ominous or interesting without Anzai’s innocent sounding vocals undercutting the dark tone of the song. The problem is, Anzai’s delicate vocals are absent for eight of the 12 tracks, and Sick Puppies’ sound really suffers when they rely solely on Moore. That’s not to say certain Moore tracks like the explosive “Walking Away” and the catchy “The Trick The Devil Did,” aren’t great in their own right -- they are -- but the rest of the album could really have used a pick-me-up from Anzai’s angelic voice. Instead, the music sounds stale and tired, not good for a band that made its name on emotion. Lackluster songs like “Where Did the Time Go” and “Poison” sound more like B-Sides off “Tri-Polar” than new material, and they take away from the appeal of “Connect.”

In spite of this, the worst song on the album does not earn that title because it’s too lethargic, but because of its subject matter. Opening with a bastardized electronic guitar version of a Native American war chant, “Gunfight” is 2:54 of cringes. Moore tactlessly rifles through topics like the genocide of the Native Americans, Kevin Bacon suing Bernie Madoff, the 2007-08 bank bailout, and Tiananmen Square. Without even going into the insensitivity, the song is repetitive and grating, and will have listeners reaching for the skip button before it’s half over.

Some previous fans of Sick Puppies are likely to be very happy with the band’s latest endeavor, but everyone else might be better served cherry picking a few favorite tracks and leaving the rest alone.

2.9/5



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user ratings (83)
2.5
average
other reviews of this album
UnstableConnection1 (2)
Maybe the Sick Puppies are caught in their own riptide and are unfortunately going down... see what ...

VigorousDuck13 (2)
A poorly executed copy and paste of "Dressed Up As Life" meets the cliche radio-rock songs of tri-p...


Comments:Add a Comment 
humblerodent
January 31st 2014


252 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Originally published by The Daily of the University of Washington: http://dailyuw.com/archive/2013/07/16/arts-leisure/album-review-%E2%80%98connect%E2%80%99-sick-puppies#.Uuqj_2RdUls



It's a shame Anzai isn't the frontman(woman?).

Green Baron
January 31st 2014


24704 Comments


Band sux so does album

humblerodent
January 31st 2014


252 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I liked Dressed Up As Life, especially when I was in high school haha

MeatSalad
January 31st 2014


17450 Comments


Fuck this band

Green Baron
January 31st 2014


24704 Comments


idk what it's called but that Kevin Bacon song I always hear on the radio is laughably bad

you can blame bush or you can tryta blame obama BUT YA SHOULDA FUCKIN LEARNED FROM YA DADDY OR YA MAMA

humblerodent
February 1st 2014


252 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah it's so bad...

loneNLwolf
February 1st 2014


153 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Fun album. Their worst, certainly, but some of the tracks are pretty enjoyable.

breakingthefragile
February 1st 2014


3104 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

THE PAST IS IN THE PAST

Boblikespie02
April 8th 2016


24 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

DON'T BRING A KNIFE TO A GUN FIGHT, YOU'LL LOSE!

SmashIsTheWay94
April 13th 2017


1428 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

The last two are good, but most of this is forgettable. Dressed Up as Life is easily the best album from this band.

Digging: Jimmy Eat World - Surviving



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