Knocked Loose
A Different Shade of Blue


4.0
excellent

Review

by iChuckles USER (20 Reviews)
August 26th, 2019 | 133 replies


Release Date: 08/23/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: I am rejected at heaven's gate.

It's hard to pin down exactly why Knocked Loose has become such an overnight success. The Kentucky, metallic hardcore quintet burst onto the scene with their 2016 debut Laugh Tracks to much critical appeasement, an album that secured them a stint at the annual Vans Warped Tour and recognition from industry giants Post Malone & Halsey – not to mention, a slot as the opening act for legendary hardcore outfit Every Time I Die. Yet for every cavernous breakdown and meme-certified call-to-mosh rallying cry (read: arf arf) that gave Laugh Tracks legs, you'd be hard pressed to call it an original or a substantial piece of work; it was a mere 30 minutes worth of larynx-rupturing shrieks laced on top of half-tempo breakdowns and lyrics that touched on a douchy fraternity kicking out a guy for being homosexual. Yet an insanely hectic touring schedule and boisterous, hell-raising live shows net the band a large following and the pressure was on to pen a follow-up record to capitalize on the band's ever growing fan base.

Fortunately, A Different Shade of Blue is exactly the sophomore record the band needed to make to prove that they aren't a fad or merely the product of good timing or a shout out by Posty on Twitter. The 12 tracks on A Different Shade... sees Knocked Loose doubling down on their strengths with bigger riffs, meatier breakdowns, more fleshed out lyrical content and a more developed vocal performance by front man Bryan Garris – whose distinct, raspy screams are beautifully complemented by guitarist Isaac Hale's guttural growls. Lead single "Mistakes Like Fractures" hits like an absolute battering ram and guides the listener through one increasingly heavier section to another with the outmost finesse and grace, and Will Putney's punchy production lets every band member's individual performance come to life and has received his full and undivided attention.

While breakdowns reign aplenty, they aren't crutches or gimmicks that the band relies on solely for fan service; instead, they serve as satisfying payoffs to prolonged buildups or as an effective contrast to blazing fast sections that often precedes them. Opener "Belleville" unveils itself with a metallic crunch and bombards the listener with a litany of riffs, ear-piercing shrieks and a cataclysmic rhythm section and the blend of old-school, 80's metal riffs and modernized hardcore elements up the heaviness thrice fold throughout. "In the Walls" is a straight up, no-holds barred structural mess whose intensity is matched only by The Dillinger Escape Plan's top-shelf material and manages to elicit multiple intense and fist-clenching responses out of the listener. Bryan's lyrics appropriately follow suit in intensity and are often as poetic and detailed as they are effective in spearheading the band's notably darker sound.

"I run towards the light
In search for escape
I am rejected
At heaven's gate"


Bryan aggressively shrieks on the blazing fast. penultimate track "Denied by Fate", which sees drummer Kevin 'Pacsun' dance around the kit with funk like rhythms amidst roaring guitar riffs, and the more reserved "Guided by The Moon" features La Dispute levels of hardcore poetry with clever use of metaphors and play on words.

"In the bloom of agony
I grip tight to feel the pain
With all the blood I draw
Leaving handprints of your name"


Like so much of A Different Shade... the lyrical content isn't meant to push boundaries but rather serves as an effective weapon in the band's arsenal, ensuring that every song is a ready-made wall-to-wall banger destined to bring venues to the ground and save for some grating bits of repetition – chugs unfortunately take center stage more often than they should – they mostly succeed with flying colors. Emma Boster from metalcore band Dying Wish and Every Time I Die front man Keith Buckley show up on the tracks "A Serpent's Touch" and "Forget Your Name" respectively by way of effective, if fleeting guest appearances and the band even flexes their video-game knowledge with an audio excerpt from the scrapped Silent Hill-demo “PT” on the tail-end of "In the Walls", all of which are elements that coincide to offer some much needed variety. A Different Shade... is a dark record, encapsulated well by the eerie album art and the subtle use of tone and texture throughout its 12 songs. It's practically the metal/hardcore equivalent of a haunted house thrill ride, wherein jolts lie around every corner and the few moments of respite you're offered are few and far between. Most importantly though, A Different Shade... is a much better album than Laugh Tracks and sees the band sounding more assured and heavier than their often-disjointed debut, complete with bigger production and bigger ideas that often culminate in satisfying and explosive ways. More so than anything, I really hope that more mainstream celebrities give Knocked Loose the time of day, because their sophomore effort is just a god-damn sweet follow up album all-around.

Standout Tracks:
Belleville
A Serpent's Touch (feat. Emma Boster)
By The Grave
In The Walls
Mistakes Like Fractures
Road 23
Denied By Fate



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user ratings (201)
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Garthdude3
August 26th 2019


7 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Great review. I didn't like the album as much as I was expecting. Every song is pretty good, but as whole, it feels one note. The vocals don't do much for me this go around. Don't know if it's the music, or if I am just losing interest in this genre. Still good if you want something meaty and heavy.

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bloc
August 26th 2019


57543 Comments


I feel like every song sounds the same on this. Might be good to shuffle it at the gym but that's about it

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onionbubs
August 26th 2019


11784 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

rips

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Beardog
August 26th 2019


3033 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's not bad, but I don't get the hype

iChuckles
August 26th 2019


296 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Great review. I didn't like the album as much as I was expecting. Every song is pretty good, but as whole, it feels one note. The vocals don't do much for me this go around. Don't know if it's the music, or if I am just losing interest in this genre. Still good if you want something meaty and heavy."



Thank you! Yeah it's a bit of a grower and the vocals definitely lack variety but so far I'm really into a lot of the songs.

Digging: Knocked Loose - A Different Shade of Blue

Hawks
August 26th 2019


73518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Gotta hear this. The EP slayz, just jammed it with the gf the other day.

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DopeFiend
August 26th 2019


133 Comments


I'm hearin a little osdm influence in By the Grave

Ninjahague
August 26th 2019


1461 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album is groovy

ian b
August 26th 2019


471 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

rips, but i honestly don't get the hype. maybe i'll always be one of those obnoxious fans that's always yelling to play shit off of Pop Culture for the rest of these guys' careers lol

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Tranqyl
August 26th 2019


321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Most frustrating thing about the band is that they never fail to make pleasantly above average hardcore. But that's just it. Nothing they've released has ever been truly excellent.

Digging: Void Of Vision - Hyperdaze

botb
August 26th 2019


13226 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Man if you think those lyrics are deep and poetic have I got a treasure trove of a million 15 year old livejournal accounts for you

JayEnder
August 26th 2019


5201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I FOLLOWED THE RABBIT



AND I FOUND MY FUCKING ENDING

oltnabrick
August 26th 2019


37381 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

rules ass

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upintheair
August 27th 2019


448 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm hoping that this grows on me a bit over time. It's pretty solid overall, however it seems a bit repetitive after first couple of listens.

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iChuckles
August 27th 2019


296 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Man if you think those lyrics are deep and poetic have I got a treasure trove of a million 15 year old livejournal accounts for you"



lmao hit me up fam



Ray91
August 27th 2019


196 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Record is stupidly heavy but fortunately the songwriting has been improved greatly, compared to laugh tracks, so it does not drag too much during its run time. Some little atmospheric hints during guided by the moon and ...south which I hope they will build upon during the next album period makes this much more satisfying to listen to.



Additionally the features rule and In the walls might be the heaviest song I've ever heard





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iChuckles
August 27th 2019


296 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

^ yeah that ambient outro in "..And Still I Wander South" that leads into "Denied By Fate" is stellar. Kinda wish this album had more moments like that.

Ray91
August 27th 2019


196 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I also find it interesting that the last track almost feels exactly like my last words from laugh tracks. The similarities are so obvious which leads me to think that might be on purpose which would give it a cool twist. Not sure on that though

Ray91
August 27th 2019


196 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

sry, double post smh

iChuckles
August 27th 2019


296 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah they're definitely similar. The part that starts 1:30 on "Last Words" is 100% identical to the intro of "Misguided Son". Not sure why they did that tho.



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