Tuesday, September 23, 2014

You Haunt Me

   Last week, one of my favorite bands ever, Sir Sly, released their first ever full length album (I talk about it before the release here). Before I get into all the jazz about that, I would just like to say how impressed I am by this band. Sir Sly started out with about six songs on a sound cloud (they're still there- I'd really recommend you listening to it) and are now opening up for bands such as The 1975 (I saw them in April) and releasing really awesomely produced albums and covers (check out their Drake cover and Arcade Fire one)
   Onto the actual thing I was supposed to talk about, You Haunt Me features four songs from the Gold EP and eight newly released tracks. Though I didn't recognize six of the new songs, I did know "Inferno" and "Too Far Gone" (which are actually my favorites off the album but we'll get into that later) since they sang them both at the concert.
   I'm going to just dive into picking each song piece by piece because I believe that's the best way to get through these reviews so without further a due, the album starts off with "Where I'm Going"- I just realized I have never ever really addressed the Gold EP so this means I'll also be including songs from there that were put onto the album. The first track was actually my favorite off the EP just because it includes so many chill and almost mysterious points with a strong drum line and some weird breathy  synth thing going on in the background that sounds super kool. It's a real nice song to just kind of jam out to (wow I sound like a pretentious dick) and is extra calming. "Ghost" was the next one (also from Gold) and though it isn't my all time favorite it does capture an almost creepy vibe with the defiant yet subtle drum in the background and raspy vocals. The reason why I'm not crazy about this track is because I feel as though they could have written a better chorus than "Ghost. You're a ghoooooost." over and over again but I do give them extra points for the really awesome bridge that I could easily listen to multiple times in a row. Of course Sir Sly added their biggest hit, "Gold", to the album which is always great. I like how it contrasts to all the other songs on EP in the way that it has more of a lively beat has a repetitive chorus but more than one phrase for it- the lyrics in it are also super quote worthy and it's a super great song to absent mindly sing along to. I would also like to point out how killer the vocals in the final chorus are. Track four was the first single to be released and also the title to the entire album. Personally, I was more than excited to hear this one when it first came out and was a rather repeated song on my Spotify. I admire how well this track opens up the CD since unlike their EP, the track is much more upbeat and has a lot of piano pieces in it- something Gold didn't have very much. I'm also super into the drum beat in this one. After "You Haunt Me", the last song off their EP, "Found You Out", comes on. The vocals are a little more belty than others in here and I am all about the bridge where everything seems to break down. Sir Sly's music can be described as a thin line between being super calm and chill and almost freaking out- "Found You Out" is a good mix of in-between since the verses are very dreamy with the whole "ah ah ah ahs" going on yet once you hit that bridge, the vocals get more desperate and that's where you really hear the mood of the song ("I'll be the bigger man while you act like you're innocent.") and then we go into a bigger and more dramatic chorus (as Sir Sly does most of the time) which is A+. We finally get out of the Gold Ep tracks and enter into "Nowhere/Bloodlines Part One". This song is interesting since if you aren't paying close attention to what track is playing, you'd think this was two different songs. The first three minutes take to the loud and jumpy piece of "Nowhere"- there is yet another really awesome drum line in the pre chorus I would just like to add. As the first part begins to end with heavy percussion and an ongoing "oooooooo" layering in the background and all of a sudden everything seems to stop and it's replaced with a steady beat that sounds almost like a train leading into the second half. "Bloodlines" is much sadder and more ballad like with a high pitched (and killer harmony) chorus line and much less production. The song then comes to an abrupt stop and we go into my favorite song off You Haunt Me, "Inferno", featuring Lizzy Plapinger. As I said before with the fine line between the intense Sir Sly music and soothing, this song is definitely on the breaking down side. It's fast paced and the chorus line is extra extra catchy. I also have to mention how A+ Lizzy's vocals are- I get a serious Courtney Love vibe off of her and she has this very apathetic tone that kills it. There's a whole lot of shout-y parts that make everything seem much more intense- if you've never heard anything of Sir Sly's, I would completely recommend this track to start off. The eighth track is "Leave You" which seems like a super filler to me. Don't get me wrong, it's an OK song but didn't really need to be on the album. The verses are pretty well written whereas the chorus lacks imagination with just "Youuuuuu youuuuuu. That I would have to leave you.". The only way I believe that got away with it was the interesting keyboard they stuffed in there. Though this could pass off well from anyone else I know Sir Sly could do better than this. We then go into "Floods" which is one of their sadder points with only a bit of clapping tone in the beginning. Though it was nice they put in a slower song, I really believe this was yet another filler (if they needed extra songs couldn't they have just added "Miracle" and "Easy Now"?). The rhymes in this one were pretty basic and the overall quality of the lyrics were low. Whatever. Though there are two shitty tracks in a row, the band redeems themselves within "Too Far Gone" which I have taken quite a liking to since I can get really into the catchy chorus line and the guitar in this track is one of their best. "Helpless/ Bloodlines Part 2" comes afterwards as since the first part was super rad, I was real into this track. "Helpless" wasn't as great as the second part but has a cool synthetic beat to it that is extremely well produced. I don't believe the transition into part two was as good as the first one with only the sound of a guitar moving frets being the only thing separating them apart but the vocals were gorgeous and as always, I was impressed by the harmonies. Even if part two sucked, I would still appreciate this track since I love it when albums have tracks like that. The last track off of You Haunt Me is "Witches" which has a bit of an overproduced intro but I was a fan of the intense chorus though the lyrics could've been improved "I'm hunting for the witches and I think I've found one." wasn't the best but I'm not complaining too much since it overall was a good song and I may just be too intense of a critic.
    All in all, You Haunt Me was a pretty fucking awesome album and I'm overall just grateful Sir Sly has more music since I've been listening to the same six songs for the past six months.

P.S I've also added some photos from the night I saw Sir Sly

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