Sound — 8
This is the second Hundred Reasons LP, and undoubtedly their best. Now, it wasn't that I disliked the sound of the first album, it was simply that not every track was that great. Indeed, like everyone else, I loved "Silver", and "If I Could" and "I'll Find You" were great songs too, but, for me at least, there wasn't that certain something that grabbed my attention. I know others will diagree, but that's the way it was. When I bought "Shatterproof Is Not A Challenge", I wasn't sure what to expect. To be honest, the musical sound isn't that different. HR are essentially a mix of At The Drive-In, Hell Is For Heroes, Serafin and Fugazi, and are largely responsible for the current surge of UK musical talent. Thankfully, however, this album does have that extra quality, and this makes it a lot better than the last. The energetic guitars are still there, and there are also a couple of ballads. It's an improvement on "Ideas Above Our Station", which is not only good for fans of the band, but people like me who thought the second album would be so much better.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics do have a tendency to be quite weak, but this is something that can be easily overlooked, due to Colin Doran's versatile voice. Paul, the guitarist, also makes a welcome return to the mic on "Pop". Overall, the lyrics are fairly good, with some brilliance in places, undoubtably, and the singing/shouting mix compliments this very well.
Overall Impression — 8
It's not a truly exceptional album, make no mistake. It is, however, HR's finest to date. The sound is good and the lyrics are good. Nothing truly ground-breaking, as so many bands have taken their inspiration from these guys in the last few years, but it's a sound they have now established as their own. They're not claiming to be anything they're not, they're not putting forwards any offensive viewpoints. The post-hardocre/emo/straight rock sound still works well, and there is certainly no sign of letting up. Key songs include "What You Get" and "Truth With Elegance". A good effort.