Issues – Black Diamonds

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At first when ‘Black Diamonds’ started with the intro I hoped they hadn’t just thought “oh, let’s add lots of techy samples and dance beats to give us a better sound” but then I realised they hadn’t when leading track ‘King Of Armarillo’ starts with screaming from Michael Bohn followed by a bass ridden breakdown. I was really enjoying the breakdowns and how well the clean and unclean vocals work together in this song, until my first theory was proven right when the bridge came in and sounded more like a Justin Timberlake song…

The ‘na na na na, hey hey hey’ in ‘The Worst of Them’ sounds like they’re going for the Top 40 chart style for some reason, but this song definitely helps Issues not make me feel like I’m listening to Woe, is Me. This song is taken over vocally mainly by Tyler Carter until towards the end when the unclean vocals make an appearance.

The lyrics in ‘Princeton Ave’ show that Issues really know how to write lyrics that really mean something and that fans could relate to, easy to sing a long to but still the clean vocal bridges just remind me of a generic chart song, something I had hoped wouldn’t happen.

Even though I do think they’ve tried to stray away from sounding like Woe, Is Me, I feel they won’t ever be able to leave that. I think this album is definitely something that fans can relate to and sing along with but they’ve gone down the wrong route with the dance-beats and fast-paced singing Tyler Carter keeps trying to do.

I really hoped to like this album, being a fan of Woe, Is Me, but it’s just followed the ‘dance/club’ route and is too musically techy and vocally clean for my liking. I understand they’re trying to step away from Woe, Is Me but I think they could have done it better than this. The lyrics are amazing – the music not so much.

RATING: 3/5

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