Review: Saosin – Along The Shadow

Saosin - Along the Shadow

Surely by now you have heard the good word: almost two years ago, Anthony Green rejoined Saosin, the band he fronted back in the early to mid-2000s, for a series of long-awaited headlining dates. It was unknown at the time whether the band would ever reconvene for a proper full-length with Green on vocals. But sure enough, here we are in 2016, and Saosin has just released Along The Shadow, their first full-length in seven years. The titular shadow could well refer to the dark specter of expectation that looms over this comeback album.

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Review: Saosin – Along the Shadow

Saosin - Along the Shadow

This first impression was originally posted as a live blog for supporters in our forums on May 3rd, 2016. First impressions are meant to be quick, fun, initial impressions on an album or release as I listen to it for the first time. It’s a running commentary written while listening to an album — not a review. More like a diary of thoughts. This post has been lightly edited for structure and flow.

Let’s take a listen to the new Saosin album. Same thing goes as before — spoilers abound, I reserve the right to change my opinion as time goes on. I’ve got multiple beers sitting in front of me, and I’m hitting play and just going to type out my thoughts as I listen.

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Review: Saosin – In Search of Solid Ground

Saosin - In Search of Solid Ground

It is not a well-kept secret that I was a bit enamored with Saosin’s debut LP. The timing of that record and the execution of it seemed damn near perfect at the time. The stars just kind of aligned for that release, and Saosin has been riding the wave ever since. And going back to listen to that self-titled gem now, I still stand by everything I said – the combination of soaring vocals, upper echelon musicianship, and flawless production made for a work deserving of its transcendence beyond the post-hardcore roots that spawned it. So here we are, three years later – has the band used its accomplishments and notoriety as a launchpad to create another killer record? Or is their sophomore effort a perfunctory exercise in simply going through the motions?

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Review: Saosin – Saosin

Saosin - Saosin

There have been few inaugural full-length releases in the recent modern rock mire that could be considered anywhere near as “make or break” as Saosin’s self-titled Capitol Records debut. While it is largely indisputable that the band’s game-changing breakout EP, Translating the Name, was a high water mark in its own right, it had the benefit of making impressions without the complication of prior expectations and the proverbial “hype.” However, with the passage of time, the residual fame from that release has begun to wear thin after three long, empty years. A crappy (though supposedly wrongly-released) EP two years later did little to reinforce fence fans’ confidences, but a bevy of high-profile tours and festival appearances have kept the bottom from falling out on Saosin, despite the defection of one of the scene’s most prolific frontmen, and other lineup changes from the white EP’s revered roster.

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