Sound — 9
I guess the most important thing to say is their sound has evolved enough to attract new fans, but not so much that it will alienate old ones. The depressing overtone of "What Do To Do When You Are Dead" still lives on on "Smile for Them" but not in a big way. They've actually got some hopeful, almost inspiring, songs on this one, such as "Hold the Door", "Stars in Your Eyes", and "My Saving Grace." They've used synthesizers and background noises on previous works, but not as prominently as "Smile for Them."
Lyrics — 10
Finally on this album, Ben has written some hopeful lyrics that aren't as depressing. "Dream to Make Believe" and "What to Do When You are Dead" had great lyrics but, none quite like these. Like I mentioned before, this album is tinged with hope, which is almost kind of taking a risk.
Overall Impression — 10
I definitely am more than satisfied with this album. The way they've matured on this one really gets me. I'd recommend this for anyone who enjoyed their previously albums, but wants something a little different. The strongest songs on this were "Williamsburg", "Snow Globe", "End of the World", "Stars In Your Eyes", and "Lullaby." If this were lost or stolen, I would buy it again, without having to think about it.