Sound — 3
Hi, I'm Ryan, and this is probably the most negative review you will ever read. Now, as a rule of thumb, I generally try to keep a slightly more open mind when listening to solo artists that are essentially sitting on a stool in a coffee shop, but I simply cannot ignore Secondhand Serenade. Vocalist and guitarist John Vesely is undoubtedly vastly talented, but his high tones may be obnoxious for some, often taking on a whiny schoolboy drone that rapes the ear canals. The guitar tones are beautifully and cleanly played, but people used to more complicated music may find his progressions cheesy and commonplace, making the music hard to listen to without getting bored. The style is, for lack of a better word, the epitamy of all "emo" musicians, using standard high pitched vocals ranging from chest voice to all out falsetto. The songs are nice for your average fangirl/fanboy, but it doesn't cut it for the rest of us.
Lyrics — 7
The lyrics are actually the best part, and are usually very poetic. Not in the whiny suicide-inspiring context, in the actual poet context. Surprising and modern lyrics like "The buttons on my phone are worn thin" from the albums track, "Why" mix well with the otherwise common lyrics about tears, and rain, and whatever else it is that these people whine about...
Overall Impression — 4
The only reason I listen to this anyway is because my sister blares it, so I have next to no choice but to suck it up, and let it envade my brain. The only reason I'm reviewing it is because I feel that you guys need to be warned and sent away from a band that has an otherwise appetizing name. Don't bother, it's not good, it's cheesy and depressing, and I got tired of the first song in the first 8 bars. Look up the lyrics if you must, but album is really only good for those who cried when the Hawthorne Heights guitarist died.