Review Summary: It's ok, ok?
As some of you may know, I covered half alives debut EP "3" and was not impressed. I thought they hadn't made a name for themselves and didn't stand up against some of the better indie pop acts around. Well, that half changes on this album. They changed from a band I didn't really care about into a band with some amazing singles and forgettable deep cuts.
Let's start with the positives, the singles are amazing for the most part. Songs like "arrow", "runaway" and "OK OK?" are well performed and written indie-pop songs, with "arrow" being the best song on the album by miles. The only single I didn't like was "still feel" which felt like they were trying too hard to appeal to the teenage, twenty-one pilots and panic! at the disco fanbase. There is one deep cut I feel is worth anymore then one listen, and that's "creature", which has a really nice vocal performance and some great performance from the rest of the band. It also has the best chorus on the album and has some great lyrical content.
On the negative side, the rest of the album is forgettable. At first, I really enjoyed most of it, but when I went to come back to the album, I found myself wanting to skip nearly every track. Not because they are all bad (which some are), but because the good tracks are just so much better. Songs like "ice cold" with Kimbra and "rest" with Samm Henshaw are really poor, so much so I struggle to listen to them all the way through (Kimbra's chorus on "ice cold" is really good but the singers "rapping" sounds dumb). Also the song "maybe" is awful, the chorus just repeats the word "maybe" over and over again, it's quite annoying.
One thing I find myself disliking is the lack of variety. Sure "arrow" and "still feel" have a different feel to the rest of the album but the overall sound is a generic indie-pop sound that I can't endure for a long amount of time. I do have a soft spot for this album though, and that is the potential half-alive show. They are clearly all great performers and the lyrical content of some tracks is good at some points. I just wish they did more to distinguish themselves.
Overall, I don't know if I see the appeal of this band some people do (there Reddit page for example), but I do hope they continue to improve. They are a talented group of people and I hope their next album or EP continues to get better. Just a tip for next time, make a sound for yourself and stick to it, otherwise, people will forget you.