Thursday, 28 November 2013

Icon for Hire: Icon for Hire

Release Date: 15 October 2013
Genre: Alternative Metal
Length: 42:49
Label: Tooth & Nail
Similar artists: Fireflight, The Letter Black, Flyleaf, The DirtyYouth
Rating: 3/5

Instead of trying to pacify us all with record full of generic lyrics and religious references, Icon for Hire’s first album, entitled Scripted, capitalized on intricate and genuine lyrics accompanied by exciting synths and beats to create a solid album. Unfortunately, in my opinion, the release of their new self-titled album is trying too hard to stand out from the crowd, and it may be doing that, just not for the right reasons.

There is a lack of consistency to be found in this record, don’t get me wrong though, in a lot of cases variety is a good way to keep an album interesting, but it has to be done right if it is going to work. In this case consistency is sacrificed for lyrical complexity and what seems to be an attempt to try every trick in the book, and as a result the record just seems to be all over the place, it is too inconsistent. Even the tracks themselves seem to be inconsistent, often changing dramatically midway through a verse, leaving lead singer Ariel’s voice to be submerged under a wave of over-production.

The lyrics in the songs are a redeeming feature; Icon for Hire have indeed managed to find a sweet spot, delicately balancing their lyrics between honesty and hope. With that said though some of the lyrics did make me rewind the track just to make sure I heard right. In the track "Watch Me" for example. The second verse drops the line, "I'm calling it, you're full of shhhh." While there isn’t actually a curse word used there, it still comes across as a bit tacky. Some of the lyrics can also come across as defensive, which can sometimes make it difficult to appreciate.

Musically this record isn’t bad at all, the problem is that there is just way too much going on and as a result you will find it hard to appreciate the quality of the music produced.

One listen to this record leaves you wondering where it all went wrong, in comparison to their first record that is. It just feels like they are trying too hard; too hard to be different, to be hip, and to be cute and interesting lyrically. Honestly, this album felt like it took a step backwards from their debut.

This Weeks Song of the Week: “Hope of Morning”.

Stay for reals Bear Grylls


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