Wake Up Sunshine by All Time Low Review

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All Time Low have been around for quite some time, having released two EPs, two live DVDs, a handful of standalone singles and seven studio albums within the first fourteen years of their career, and their sound has evolved a lot over the years. Fast forward to 2020, and the Baltimore-based quartet are back with their eighth LP, titled “Wake Up, Sunshine.”

While “Last Young Renegade” noticeably leaned in a bit of a different direction, as the band experimented with a lot of pop and alternative elements, there are plenty of moments on “Wake Up, Sunshine” that show them returning to their pop rock and pop punk roots, some of which are found in a few of the singles that the band put out leading up to the album’s release. “Getaway Green” is easily the best example of this, with plenty of energy and extremely catchy guitar riffs reminiscent of those on past releases like “So Wrong, It’s Right” or “Nothing Personal.”

A handful of the songs on here combine that nostalgic pop punk sound with some of their more pop rock influences, and the remaining singles are really good examples of this. The fantastic lead single and opening track “Some Kind Of Disaster: brings a softer intro before upbeat verses and a massive chorus come in, “Sleeping In” brings a very energetic chorus, and “Melancholy Kaleidoscope” brings a ton of energy throughout, adding in some acoustic guitar to help drive its chorus. “Trouble Is” leans way more to the pop rock side, and sounds a little similar to newer work from Blink-182 and Simple Creatures, the project that All Time Low front man Alex Gaskarth has with Blink’s very own front-man, Mark Hoppus. Rian Dawson’s drumming really shines on this track, and the chorus offers up some pretty good melodies. There are also two tracks on here that were seemingly meant to be a bigger track together called “Seasons.” “January Gloom” is the first of these two tracks, bringing some slightly darker composition through some memorable guitar riffs and melodies throughout. “Summer Daze” is the second of those two, and the title is very fitting, given the happier and brighter tone that the song has musically, and it’s yet another perfect example of how well All Time Low have blended their pop rock and pop punk influences on this album.

The band also did quite a bit of experimentation on this record, with songs that show them trying something a little bit different. “Wake Up, Sunshine” (which I personally believe would have been a great choice for the opening track) delivers some slightly darker melodies and instrumentals during the verses and pre-choruses, leading up to a happy, carefree chorus. “Clumsy” is one of quite a few on here that allows Alex’s vocals to shine with some more slightly darker melodies in the beginning, leading up to one of the biggest and best choruses on the whole album. “Monsters” is also on the darker side, which I think fits the song very well. Blackbear is featured on the track, and while that collaboration was a bit unexpected, his vocal style and the guest feature overall compliments the song perfectly. The other feature found on this album is on the upbeat “Favorite Place,” which features The Band CAMINO. The guitars are a bit more reminiscent of CAMINO’s signature indie/alternative sound and gives the song that sort of vibe (for the most part), but the song does a great job at mixing that sound with the blend of pop rock and pop punk that All Time Low have created throughout this record.

In contrast, a couple of the songs on here show a softer side of the band’s sound, similar to the overall sound of their previous album, “Last Young Renegade.” Interlude “Pretty Venom” is probably the most simplistic track on the album, but it works really well as an interlude and its placement on the track-list seems fitting, and closing track “Basement Noise” (one of my favorites) brings a solid vocal performance in the chorus and lyrics that reflect on the band’s humble beginnings. “Safe” is driven by subtle instrumentation in the softer verses before a huge anthemic chorus comes in, and the same can be said about “Glitter & Crimson,” which is primarily led by softer percussion and acoustic guitar as it leads up to a much harder hitting bridge with one of the strongest vocal performances this record has to offer.

“Wake Up, Sunshine” shows bits and pieces of All Time Low’s history as a band, combining the various elements of pop, rock, alternative and everything in between that they’ve incorporated into their sound over the years. Overall, this is a refreshing pop rock record, yet another fantastic one from All Time Low, and easily one of my favorite albums from this year so far.

Listen to the song here

Review courtesy of Megan Langley | Instagram

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Made Up Lost Time by Kevin Garrett | EP Review

Kevin Garrett

The past few years have been a wild ride for musician Kevin Garrett, from releasing his debut EP “Mellow Drama” in 2015 to GRAMMY nominations, festival performances and shows with acts such as Mumford & Sons and Alessia Cara, and dropping his debut LP “Hoax” last year. Kevin has returned with his newly released sophomore EP, “Made Up Lost Time.”

The opening track “Tell You How I’m Feeling” really shows Kevin’s talent as a vocalist through a soulful performance that provides good melodies in the verses, and the harmonies in the chorus add more to the performance. The vocals really shine on the following track “Keep You Waiting” as well, as they bring a memorable pre-chorus that helps build up the song really well to its chorus. 

“Can’t Come Back” is on the much softer side, and the piano fits perfectly on the track. The melodies on here are really good as well and the song makes a great ballad overall. Lead single “Gone Again” is on the more upbeat side, bringing a rhythm as catchy as the melodies, and closing track “Factor In” is also a bit slower and is one of the most memorable and well-written songs the EP has to offer.

“Made Up Lost Time” is a soulful and memorable sophomore EP from Kevin Garrett.

Review courtesy of Megan Langley | Instagram

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The American Nightmare Tour 2017 | Photos & Review

The American Nightmare Tour came through Toronto and it was quite the show. Beartooth was the first band to come on, their stage presence and Caleb Shomos’ roaring screams were enough to start off the show strong. Following that Underoath hit the stage playing fan favorites from every one of their albums. You could feel the energy in the crowd as these pioneers of metal-core rocked the stage. Finally , the main act, Bring Me the Horizon. The whole arena shook with excitement as they came on and you could hear thousands of screams upon Oli Sykes arrival. They kicked off the show with confetti and an amazing lighting set up while playing Happy Song. If this tour is coming near you I highly suggest you go, it’s not worth missing.

Photography and Review by Chris Luna

March 15,2017| Ricoh Coliseum | Toronto

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Statelines EP – Dylan Jakobsen

Statelines EP - Dylan Jakobsen

Dylan Jakobsen , an alternative country artist is just starting to break the mold and hit the surface of the music scene. Working in the music world for around two years Dylan has shared the stage with many other amazing artists. These artists include : Boys Likes Girls, This Providence, The Maine, Parachute, and many more. Recently Dylan released a four track EP called “Statelines” . Track after track Dylan keeps the music and vocals upbeat. Vocals may get softer, but that just makes Dylan’s voice that much more soothing. One track even features Josh Withenshaw formerly of Every Avenue. You don’t want to miss this, pick it up here : http://noisetrade.com/dylanjakobsenmusic/statelines-ep

Updates coming your way :

Concert reviews :

  1. January 5th, 2013 : The Resolution Tour NYC. [ posted ]
  2. January 28th, 2013 : Lawson & Mikey Deleasa ft meeting The Vamps.

EP/Album reviews :

  1. Rookie Of The Year : Along For The Ride [posted]
  2. Lentils and Dirt : both EPs
  3. Anchors and Atlases : Self Titled EP

Interviews with :

  1. Battle Ghost [ released ]
  2. Lentils and Dirt [coming soon]
  3. The Phoenix Philosophy [ coming soon ]
  4. Paradise Fears [released]
  5.  Say It Say It [released ]

Review : Seven Year War – Welcome to the Work Force

Suburbia, Good Guys, Take Take, White Lies, Not Alone.
Fun riffs you find in songs of bands like Yellowcard and Blink-182 are found embedded into the 5 songs included in this EP. With these riffs accented by the beats coming from the drums, Seven Year War’s EP will make you want to jump around and have some fun. The unique vocals of Johannes dance perfectly on the layered beats of the drums played by Matt and guitar played by Levi. My favorite song on Welcome to The Work Force is Good Guys. This song had lyrics like “Why do all them good guys cry? Why do all them bad girls lie?” Over all this EP is fun to listen to while driving, working out, or doing things around the house.

-Kim Cisneros

Be sure to pick that up here :[https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/welcome-to-the-work-force-ep/id563130501]

Keep up to date with them on facebook as well : [https://www.facebook.com/sevenyearwar]