Review: The Early November – The Mother, the Mechanic, and the Path

The Early November - The Mother, the Mechanic, and the Path

The Early November is taking the idea of the concept album and turning it upside down. Instead of having the music progress with the storyline, they have written two entirely different records that revolve around one idea. And to top that feat off, they also recorded a third disc that sums up the first two discs into a soundtrack of dialogue and music. Yes, the Early November has written the very album that will make or break their career. The Mother, The Mechanic, and The Path offers us a very unique storyline: we are introduced to a young man who clashes with his domineering father. He leaves his family with the girls he loves, setting out to make his own path in life, one that avoids the life of his parents. Upon having his own child, he promises to himself that he will not become like his father. But, as his life comes full circle, his son begins to revolt against him, and he finds himself slowly slipping into the mold of his father, the very destiny he tried so hard to break away from. TEN frontman Ace Enders was inspired to write this story after seeing movies such as Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless MindThe Matrix, and The Truman Show. The plot is very intriguing, yes, but would the music measure up to the story?

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Review: Underoath – Define the Great Line

Underoath - Define the Great Line

Chasing the safety of their last release, Underoath have returned with Define The Great Line, an album that undeniably marks the transition of how accessible metalcore can be. After two years of extended touring, the Florida sextet joined co-producers Matt Goldman (Copeland, Cartel) and Adam Dutkiwicz (guitarist for Killswitch Engage) to create a release that would showcase both talent and growth. Pleased with their six-man lineup and indie label Tooth & Nail imprint Solid State, Define the Great Line is undoubtedly a record that shows how masterfully a band can be both delicate and brutal with the same sound. Three apparent differences arise in this transition record: bottomless metal influence, the depth and variety of vocal work and excessive percussions. 

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Review: AFI – Decemberunderground

AFI - Decemberunderground

Over the course of the past decade, AFI has released 5 full length albums on indie label Nitro, signed to a major, reached platinum status with major label debut, headlined numerous Warped Tours, toured around the world, and is held dear by thousands and thousands of rabid fans. With a resume like that, one would think that any band would be content with that, but not AFI. Since the release of Sing The Sorrow in 2003 and many days on the road, AFI (vocalist Davey Havok, guitarist Jade Puget, drummer Adam Carson, and bassist Hunter Burgan), over the course of 9 months, recorded over 100 songs in the studio with long time producer Jerry Finn and out of those sessions, they came out with their seventh full length album, DecemberundergroundDecember is a twelve song collection that blends rock, punk, hardcore, pop, and electronica into a beautifully dark work of art.

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Interview: Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy

Fall Out Boy

On Thursday, May 4th I was able to sit down with Pete Wentz before Fall Out Boy’s sold out show at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. I was able to ask some follow-up questions to Part One1 of our ABSOLUTExclusive interview with him as well as address some things that we and you felt were missing from that series of questions. Once again, I’d like to thank Pete for taking an hour out of his hectic schedule to do this. I’d also like to thank Fall Out Boy’s tour manager, Dan Suh, for making sure everything ran smoothly. Hope you enjoy…

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  1. We’ve been unable to find this in our archives.

Review: Less Than Jake – In With the Out Crowd

Less Than Jake - In With the Out Crowd

Less Than Jake have been doing the whole, “we’re a band thing” for longer than most of those reading this review have probably been into this whole “scene.” They released one of the best albums I overplayed during my high-school years (Hello Rockview); and they continue to get shit from kids who can’t get over the fact that they won’t release the same album over and over. What one needs to remember is that Less Than Jake have proved their not a flash in the pan band. They’ve been writing hit songs for years. While it’s hard for me to picture myself listening to some of the pop-bands I enjoy at this stage of my life in 15 years – I can totally see myself still breaking out Less Than Jake albums well into my years.

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Review: Angels and Airwaves – We Don’t Need to Whisper

Angels & Airwaves - We Don't Need to Whisper

Blink 182 has become somewhat of a touchy subject in the punk community. They undoubtedly became one of the largest bands ever spawned from the ever-expansive genre as they released an unprecedented number of hit singles and successful albums during many years of music production. Where they fall on the scale of respect is quite another issue, and a more debatable one at that. Whereas thousands honor them as pop-punk pioneers, countless others blaspheme them as trite, overly immature, and unbearable. The group’s reputation transcends all demographics. The former opinion is expressed by aging fathers while the latter takes place even among the visitors of a site originally intended in large part to be a fan site for the aforementioned band.

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Review: Arctic Monkeys – Who the Fuck Are Arctic Monkeys?

Arctic Monkeys - Who the Fuck Are Arctic Monkeys?

With every major music publication and their momma jumping on the bandwagon, it’s pretty easy for some of us to hate the Arctic Monkeys. Overrated and hype are two words that come hand in hand with this band these days, and with their debut album, Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not selling like hotcakes overseas and here in the United States, it’s not hard to fall into this mindset. But I’m here to advise not to. Not only is their debut album something special, their follow-up EP, Who The Fuck Are The Arctic Monkeys, follows in the same vein of smart, aggressive indie rock. 

The EP begins with the same opening track of the LP, “The View From The Afternoon,” which starts fast and finishes faster, and is a great opener here as it is on the LP. “Cigarette Smoker Fiona” follows with a guitar line that chugs and drums that bash as Alex Turner’s thick vocals take control. “Dispair In The Departure Lounge” is a slow, echoing track that’s great to chill out to. “No Buses” starts with a simple, relaxing riff and is a mild, bouncy track that picks up at the end with a constant pounding on the drums. The final track, “Who The Fuck Are The Arctic Monkeys?,” begins with a bass line that grooves and more high guitar tones. At 3:17, the song takes on a slight dark tone thanks to Andy Nicholson’s bass and Turner’s vocals. The end of this song is the storm taking over the sunshine of the beginning, making it the standout track on this EP. 

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Review: Brandtson – Hello, Control

Brandtson - Hello, Control

Brandtson has been releasing amazing albums for years, the problem is not many people have been paying much attention. Their last album, Send Us a Signal, was the sleeper hit a few years ago. Building a wave of buzz from within the belly of our little community here. They’ve returned, they’ve evolved, but they’ve stayed within their formula for making some of the catchiest and enjoyable pop-rock you’ve ever heard.

With the song-writing storytelling skills of Limbeck and the catchy musical prowess of The Format, the sing-a-longs begin and don’t stop until the last note. As we’ve already mentioned this “electronica” trend has taken hold. Even Brandtson aren’t safe from this invasion! We get the beats, we get the dance songs (one song is even titled “No One Dances Anymore”) – but they do it in a way that comes across with the maturity only a band that’s been doing this whole shebang for years could have.

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Review: Forgive Durden – Wonderland

Forgive Durden - Wonderland

Welcome to Wonderland. A world meticulously crafted by the minds of Forgive Durden, lies, deceit, greed, and lust lay within. The picture of Wonderland is painted with vivid lyrical imagery provided by Forgive Durden in their debut full-length. In one of the most diverse records to come out in recent memory, Forgive Durden brings their own musical style to several different musical genres, including takes on country, tango, and pop. But intertwined into all these styles is a distinctive sound that the band has made for themselves. Showing influences from Gatsby’s American Dream, Wonderland is full of accented off-beats and chromatic progressions, adding another band from Seattle who follows in Gatsby’s tech-rock footsteps. But the comparisons should end there. While listeners may hear similarities in certain chords or guitar stylings, virtually every song on Wonderland contains a chorus and Forgive Durden takes their musical exploration far beyond the expected scope. 

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Review: Rock Kills Kid – Are You Nervous?

Rock Kills Kid - Are You Nervous

Hey, did you hear? 80’s revival! Electronic dance music is in! Seriously guys, it’s the new wave. All the cool bands are doing it.

That has to be the rallying call going on at major labels these days. They’ve seen the trend and they’ve pounced. We’ve seen it in The Faint, Panic! at the Disco, Head Automatica, Men, Women & Children, etc., and the list goes on and on. I now welcome Rock Kills Kid to the family.

There’s one minor difference. Regardless of the amount of crap I’m going to get for the following statement – I’d take the new Rock Kills Kid over just about all of them.

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Review: Thursday – A City By The Light Divided

Thursday - A City By The Light Divided

In 1992, the defending AFC Champion Buffalo Bills faced the Houston Oilers in the AFC Wild Card round. The first half of this game was a disaster for the Bills. Jim Kelly out with an injury and the Oilers dominated going into halftime with a 28-3 lead. Dejected, the Bills didn’t have a lot of time to make changes, but they realized they were the defending champs and needed to live up to that. The second half featured a completely different team, as backup quarterback Frank Reich threw 4 touchdowns to bring the game into overtime, which the Bills eventually won 41-38, making it one of the greatest comebacks in NFL history. I’m sure by now all of you are confused as to why I began the review with such a story, but it is a great way to describe Thursday’s second major label album (and fourth overall), A City By The Light Divided

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Review: Moneen – The Red Tree

Moneen - The Red Tree

Thus far in 2006, there have been a few really good records, some solid ones, and more mediocre albums than I can count. No album has hit me in a way where I have to take a step back and just mutter “whoa.” Enter The Red Tree, the new album from Canadian rockers Moneen and the first great album of 2006. I enjoyed their previous efforts, but I was not expecting this album to hit me like it did. This 11-track masterpiece incorporates beautifully crafted lyrics with music that is just as delicate as it is hard-hitting, making this album full of intensity, passion, and raw emotion. 

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Review: Hit the Lights – This Is A Stick Up… Don’t Make It A Murder

Hit the Lights - This Is a Stick Up...Don't Make It a Murder
Tell me again how we're easily forgettable
So formulaic and way too simple to be at all original, yea so we've heard
It's time to keep your mouth shut while we show you how to rock-n-roll

This is how Hit The Lights begin their debut full-length album, This Is A Stick Up….Don’t Make It A Murder, by responding to a certain reviewer’s opinion on their EP Until We Get Caught. The Lima, Ohio, five-piece not only deliver on their promise to “show us how to rock-n-roll,” but this album is also one of the first feel-good albums of 2006. Produced by Matt Squire (The Receiving End Of Sirens, Panic! At The Disco, many others), HTL offers us 12 tracks of pop-punk goodness that’ll have you wishing that summer were already here.

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