Sound — 8
Ahh, Attack Attack. Chances are if you have a Myspace you've heard this band on at least one of your friends profiles. If you're not familiar with AA!, they're a 5-piece synthcore (yes, I made a new genre for them) band from Columbus, Ohio. They've actually been around for quite a while, but didn't come out with their debut album until November of 2008. Anyways, there are many things that this band can be recognized by, from dominant synth sections (see Stick Stickly) and growling guitars (Party Foul), and the heavily autotuned vocals. 01.Hot Grills And High Tops: the first thing you hear when you press play is a generic rap beat and a holler', which then turns into the whole band yelling What!' over a swanky synth. Its cool the first time you listen (and at concerts) but listening to it by yourself every time you play the album is a little much, not to mention how clich the damn thing is. 2/5 02.Stick Stickly: This track greets you with a vicious scream and an equally vicious breakdown to start out, then progresses into the popcore sounding chorus. This is the one spot where the album falls flat on its face. Every time the singer attempts to actually sing, theres a complete assload of autotuning going on. Im talking about more autotuning than Lil' Wayne's Prom Queen. It's fine if the artist uses it in moderation, but its absolutely everywhere on this album and refuses to go away. If you've heard their singer actually sing in concert, though, he's actually not that bad, which raises the question of if they purposely autotuned the hell out of everything. If they did, then that might be the cheesiest thing EVER in the history of music. Sorry for my midsong rant, but it had to go in the review somewhere and this was the best place to put it. Anyways, after you get through the chorus, there's another generic breakdown which leads into another chorus and breakdown. After all that, when you think you can predict whats gonna happen next, the synth player comes in. It seems like everyone either loves or hates when AA! Uses the synth, personally I love it. It gives this track a much more get up and dance' kind of quality to it, and I really like how after that they have a breakdown to end the song. 4/5 03.Bro, Ashley's Here: this song is semideceptive because of the quiet intro, but then it goes flying into the song. The part right after the intro and before the chorus is really cool, because both guitars are harmonizing panic chords. I know its nothing new and has been done by 463789 other bands, but its neat. After that comes in the cool sounding chorus, which sadly is kinda ruined by the lyrics. Get up, get up, she's calling your name/ You don't have to be something you're not *insert facepalm* After you get through that though, they have a breakdown which goes from angry to completely furious at the end. Then it gets poppy again, another chorus, and then a completely spine-tingly breakdown to finish. Probably the best song on the CD. 4.5/5 04.Shred, White And Blue: this song is where the CD starts to get a little monotonous for a second. This song sounds kind of like Bro and Stick combined, minus the synth to keep things interesting. it's pretty boring, the whole thing basically is a glorified breakdown. You can skip this track and you'll still be able to sleep at night. 2/5 05.Party Foul: this is probably the most overlooked song on this entire CD, which is pretty sad because it's really good. The intro sounds moderately heavy and kind of keeps you on your toes, which goes into the chorus that sound equally iffy. Then they go into the digital breakdown', which involves a ton of synth, and personally is pretty cool. It gets annoying at the end during the I cant, I cant believe this! part, though, which almost wrecks the entire song for me. Luckily, they save the best part of the song till last, which is an absolutely crazy breakdown. Trust me when I say that this is one of the best breakdowns Ive ever heard. Just the way they play in is amazing to me, and despite being nothing like the rest of the song, it fits in very well. All around, great. 4/5 06.What Happens If I Can't Check My Myspace When We Get There?: this would be the best song on the CD, if they didn't make the song cheesier than Goldfish crackers. Lay down your head, and sleep with me tonight! Lie in this bed. WTF? You guys seriously can't come up with a better lyrics than that? It almost makes me cry, because it completely wrecks the awesome 2-step guitar intro and the synth outro breakdown, which is probably the best breakdown on the entire CD. It's truly a shame. 2.5/5 07.Interlude: also extremely cheesy, but with this track there's no lyrics to screw things up. An amazing trancy synth weaves its way in and out all by itself on this song. Extremely fun to jam out to and girls get naked to it at their concerts, so whats not to like about it? 3.5/5 08.The People's Elbow: a lot of people like this song, but its way too same-y for me. The ominous' sounding intro makes way for a plowing guitar and high pitched screams that make way for more autotuned crap and synth bobbery. Nothing stands out that much on this track. Another one you could probably skip. 2.5/5 09.Kickin' Wing, Animal Doctor: you can't help but laugh at the Joe Dirt references for this song. The intro is also pretty cool and segues into the song pretty well. Its well-written overall, and is very well executed with the poppiness near the end also. Not anything too special, but worth a listen or two. 3/5 10.Dr. Shavargo, Pt. 3: I personally love this song. This is where the synth works great to lead into the song, with a technoish beat and sound going into guitars playing octaves and then, *GASP*, lyrics that actually sound like they aren't autotuned beyond belief. I mean, they ARE autotuned of course, just not nearly as much as the rest of the album. The lyrics are a little too Jesus oriented (they're Christian too, guys) but isn't that bad, and near the end the synth jumps up and down while the sunger sings Come on girl/ Ive been waiting for you/To make your move and an outro breakdown. 4/5 11.Catfish Soup: a cool soft intro, leading into a crazy sounding breakdown and panic chord combination with the guitars. This song is one of the only songs on the album that goes back and forth between soft and heavy a lot, and AA! does so very well. They make things work that you wouldn't expect in the song. Also, the outro riff is one of the fircest sounding on the album, and closes the song nicely. 4/5 12.Outro: the string and piano is an extremely cool way to sut out the album. The piano goes through a very cool and uplifting sounding chord progression that'll leave you wishing the track was longer. A quirky but awesome way to close out more than a half hour of complete madness. 3.5/5
Lyrics — 6
The lyrics on the album on all of the songs are about girls, sex, or breaking up. All the songs are pretty easy to figure out what they're talking about. Some songs are actually wayyy too straightforward with what they're talking about that it takes you aback quite a bit (see What Happens?). The whole album is based I think around a person coming to Christ, saying that someday came suddenly/And now I'm standing here. If you're religious, it kinda gives you chills. But if you aren't then it's kind of an eye roller. It really depends on what you are.
Overall Impression — 8
Overall, this album is a little generic, but so is all the music scenesters listen to nowadays. It's cool music to mosh to, dance to, and sing to, which must mean that they did at least most things right when they wrote it all. The only real problems I have with the album is that the lyrics might be a little too Christian and stupid sounding for some people, the guitars are stupid simple (just go look at some tabs), and the vocals are WAY too overproduced and autotuned. Otherwise this album is great, and I would recommend it to anyone starting to get into the hardcore scene.