Tonight Alive
Limitless


2.0
poor

Review

by LotusFlower USER (24 Reviews)
March 8th, 2016 | 48 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The “other side” wasn’t pretty

It appears that Jenna McDougall and the other lot that make up Tonight Alive are the newest to pull the next “Coldplay” (Other acceptable phrases include Maroon 5, Panic! at the Disco, and Fall Out Boy) and have abandoned their roots to jump on the ever growing bandwagon that is “career ending sell out pop”. Fortunately for Tonight Alive however, is that unlike their fellow ex-rock contemporaries, they sound like a full band that's present for Limitless. There’s none of the nonsense of downgrading members to touring musicians (Panic! At the Disco), using your band’s name as a brand for a half-baked solo album (Maroon 5), or “realizing” a sound that could have been produced by any studio session ghost producer (A Head Full of Dreams). You still have the sense that this is indeed Tonight Alive well... alive and well for the production of this album.

Lead single Human Interaction gave a glimmer of hope that Tonight Alive was going to slay it with Limitless a few months back. Even with it’s insanely safe output, you could still feel Taahi moving the space-aesthetic synths along seamlessly with the lick of a guitar and you could definitely hear Best still kicking it in the percussion department despite restraint. Even better was Jenna herself packing a wallop with her soaring strain through the chorus. Unfortunately, however, Human Interaction is the lone track to suggest that Limitless was the next chapter for Tonight Alive after they came through “the other side” back in 2013. Beyond that, everything else has been so incredibly streamlined and restrained that Limitless is ironically "Limited" in the creative department. Sadly irony doesn’t have the benefit of hilarity that could give them some credibility here. All that’s left is an album that is simply put; boring as all hell.

Limitless suffers from the immaturity that comes with the change for the group’s poppier direction. A constant “space” theme can be spotted through the album’s runtime; many of the synths carry an empty cadence or a vintage screech that reminiscences of the atmosphere of a trip in space. Interesting in concept, and even more so when demonstrated through the sound of blaring “alarms” on Human Interaction. The synths form a foundation that alludes to the theme of isolation present on that track brilliantly. It shows that when implemented correctly, there is room to show that Tonight Alive have a good idea up their sleeve. Though execution is half-assed everywhere else. It serves as nothing more than a way to cover up the fact there used to be a groove guitarist hidden somewhere in the band’s lineup and in turn; when combined with a recessive “struggles of love and adversity” approach to lyricism, creates a sound that is as dated as early 2000s pop rock.

The rest of the album becomes hilariously inconsistent with Power of One, the 8th track of the album, where Tonight Alive completely abandon the poppy synth heavy pop sound for a sound reminiscent of their earlier output… if they were circa 2010 B-Sides. Whether Tonight Alive forgot they had a theme going on or realized it was a bad idea too late into production is beyond me. Though the cheesy “empowering” guitar ballad The Greatest nor the guitar heavy anti-authority (or any position of power thanks to the vagueness of the lyrics) rock track I Defy will be enough to compensate.

In the end, Tonight Alive leave behind an album that fails to showcase that they had any solid foundation or idea when climbing aboard the pop bandwagon. The songwriting relies heavily on cheap synths and the lyricism reeks heavily of dated themes that were done and tired by pop rock bands years before them. If not for a solid vocal performance from Jenna, the redeeming factors would be cut down to none. It’s uncertain to know where Tonight Alive will be going next and sadly, it’s not clear if it’s worth finding out. Maybe they shouldn’t have crossed the other side after all.



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user ratings (85)
Chart.
2.1
poor
other reviews of this album
JacobMGreenia76 (3.5)
Tonight Alive scale back the guitars and take a bold step forward to further a young and burgeoning ...

HunterHuntable (2)
More Limited than Limitless...



Comments:Add a Comment 
LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Stream: https://play.spotify.com/album/3HXBi2AL5Tky1kTRk9XvKf

Stand Outs: Human Interaction

Blow Outs: Everything else tbh

Score: 2/5

Not really a fan of negative reviews, since i'd rather divert attention to good things. But I used to listen to these guys back int he day so I thought it'd be nice to finally set them free from my heart. Criticism welcomed. Recommended albums are half albums i was reminded of when listening or albums that do the same thing but better, check them out.



ill prolly review the undertale soundtrack next. the second highest rated album of 2015 deserves that.

CaliggyJack
March 8th 2016


2379 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Good review, bad album



pos'd

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
March 8th 2016


2908 Comments


"Though execution is half-assed everywhere else."

My thoughts for the entirety of the album. I'm with CaliggyJack

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
March 8th 2016


14138 Comments


video for human interaction makes me thinks its the early 2000s again

Digging: Jeremy Soule - Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Soundtrack

grindcorecore
March 8th 2016


619 Comments


i really liked this band a few years back but dang this is bad. good review though

Mutantsnowstorm
March 8th 2016


504 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5 | Sound Off

yeah this record sounds like something out of 2003, which would be okay if the early 2000's were making a comeback.



Unfortunately for TA, we haven't reached that point in pop culture yet.

Ebola
March 8th 2016


3474 Comments


"Maybe you shouldn’t of crossed the other side after all."
Shouldn't have, not shouldn't of

LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Wow, I had shouldn't have in my first draft. Don't know why I changed it.



Thanks Ebola!

CaliggyJack
March 8th 2016


2379 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

The only time you will hear "Thanks" and "Ebola" in the same sentence. lol

LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

lol

LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

but yeah, this album sounds so horribly dated outside of Human Interaction. Would fit right at home with 2006 Paramore.

CaliggyJack
March 8th 2016


2379 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

And 2006 Paramore would fit right at home with 1999 Blink-182.

LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Oh thanks for the feature!

Sinternet
March 8th 2016


18553 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Yeah this pretty shit

Digging: Illenium - Awake

TheGooseTavern
March 8th 2016


95 Comments


Way to take Shai Hulud's cover idea lol

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
March 8th 2016


31475 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

which music video does she have korn hair

LotusFlower
March 8th 2016


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3j7PBy7WiIY



this one?

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
March 8th 2016


14138 Comments


and in this one

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPu8zDZxVNc

PappyMason
March 8th 2016


5702 Comments


I find the album art to be really alluring

Sanders
March 8th 2016


2410 Comments


V disappointing, what are you so scared of was a great record



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