THE END OF THE WORLD PARTY by I SEE STARS (Sumerian Records)
Ever since their signing to Sumerian Records in 2008 and their subsequent release of their full-length debut 3-D less than a year later, I See Stars has been constantly on the road. Treks across the country would include dates with Asking Alexandria, Attack Attack!, A Day To Remember as well as a breakthrough stint on last years’ edition of the Warped Tour. A new recording would see the light of day in the form of Our Love, a cover originally from The Outfield, on the Punk Goes Classic Rock composition. Showing the band has matured tremendously as musicians and performers, many were awaiting what the sophomore release of I See Stars would be like. And now with The End Of The World Party, I See Stars unleash it all into the stratosphere with an all new set of songs sure to take them onto even greater galaxies on glory.
A remarkably solid effort, The End Of The World Party is jammed packed with 11 electronic/post hardcore anthems and is a definitive triumph for this Warren, Michigan-based band. Adding a good deal of melodic elements into the mix, there is plenty to sing along with when I See Stars brings on the party to venues all across the nation,
The disc opens on a sonically devastating note with the the title cut The End Of The World Party, a potent kickoff track that is sure to win over the older fans and well as newer starry eyed converts. Over It has a dazzling techno trance weaving throughout while retaining its heaviness. A true “electronic dream” of a song with both superb clean and unclean vocals, which declares a true state of independence.
Still Not Quite Enough has dazzling elements of melodic pop thrown into the mix, and with the electronic underscore and heroic guitar work, the song is definitely a raging achievement for the band. “I traveled the world but it’s still not quite enough, for the first time in my life I fell like you could be enough,” sings vocalist Devin Oliver with a wondrous sense of intrigue and heartfelt unease.
Wonderland is a perfect example of how I See Stars has advanced as songwriters and performers, with each member contributing admirably to this absolute piece of pop perfection – complete with heavy breakdown at its conclusion. Home For The Weekend is an out of control celebration, with its super infectious beats and impassioned vocals the perfect connection for time spent with good friends.
It Will Be Up (High School Never Ends) is a song that many of their young fans will be able relate to, with their “This is our chance to show them all” sense of rising above adversity that is thrilling to behold. Upside Down is another catchier than hell track set to ultra vivid life with funky techno beats, swirling guitars, and an excellent mix of heavy and sung vocals that sounds like a potential hit single for the band.
The Common Hours II is a continuation to a song from the 3-D album, once again demonstrating a band that has grown tremendously tight since their 2008 inception. “I will have my revenge, red rum, red rum,” screams the intensive chorus on this track.
When I Let You Down (Numb) possesses a keen sense of both melody and angst within a time of personal turbulence while Glow is a shimmering piece of pop perfection set to a dancey, post hardcore vibe. And be sure to stay for the end of the party to hear Pop Rock And Roll, am empowering conclusion whose “I can be anything at all” lyrical content is sure to strike a chord with fans of all ages.
The End Of The World Party was skillfully produced by Cameron Mizell and mastered by Joey Sturgis – an unbeatable team to be sure. The I See Stars lineup of sheer talent includes Devin Oliver on lead vocals, Zach Johnson on unclean vocals and keyboards, Brent Allen on lead guitar, Jimmy Gregerson on rhythm guitar, Jeff Valentine on bass, and Andrew Oliver in drums. Destined to be the soundtrack for the summer for many a music aficionado, The End Of The World Party is a massive celebration of sound that should find I See Stars a good deal of mass appeal and recognition.
(Review by Kenneth Morton)
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