This Is How The Wind Shifts review by Silverstein

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Feb 4, 2013
  • Sound: 6
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 6.3 Neat
  • Users' score: 8.3 (69 votes)
Silverstein: This Is How The Wind Shifts
0

Sound — 6
Hard-working post-hardcore outfit Silverstein seem to have had better luck than a lot of their contemporaries. Bands like Aiden, Senses Fail and Hawthorne Heights shared their mid-2000s heyday but they've lost a lot of momentum since. Many find themselves back on the club circuit out of ideas and running thin on support. The Canadians on the other hand are doing a little better for themselves, but "This Is How The Wind Shifts" is their first without lead guitarist Neil Boshart, who is replaced by former tour stand-in Paul Marc Rousseau. Can a major change behind the wheel reinvigorate a band burdened with an aging sound?

It can, to an extent. It's quickly apparent that there's a desire to go on the offensive, here, with chuggy riffs and choppy tempo changes breaking up the usual hook-laden fare more regularly and with a new belief. Shane Told's screams at last blend into the mix properly. This is undoubtedly the best production job the band have had in their career, which I'm sure is partly down to the shake-up in the guitar department.

A degree of self-awareness is required to really get into some of these songs learn to become unfazed by the cheesiness of the choruses and perpetual adolescence of Told and "A Better Place", "On Brave Mountains We Conquer" and many more can get the blood pumping nicely. Expect little joy if you can't break down a few walls for this album.

Lyrics — 7
As concepts go this has a rather good one. Each track from the first half of the album has a corresponding one in the second, which retells the story with one crucial detail changed; "Massachusetts" pairs "California", "Arrivals" pairs "Departures" and so on. A woman may, for example, be convinced to stay with her abusive partner on the first half but choose to move away on the second. The key point is that a single decision or event can change the course of history dramatically, depending on how the wind shifts. These stories are, of course, romantic ones told in typically melodramatic fashion, with lots of sleepless nights, broken hearts and such like. It wouldn't be Silverstein otherwise, but the concept has a lot more potential than is explored here.

Overall Impression — 6
The heavy side is much improved and the hooks are perhaps the best Silverstein have ever written, but at the end of the day this album's come several years too late. The concept is interesting, the pacing is perfect and you can't fault them for effort but the heart of the band hasn't changed. Recruiting a new generation of fans will take more than this. As the nasally American post-hardcore sound moves into its twilight years and less and less bands enjoy commercial success with it, ultimately the sound must diversify or risk losing its appeal. "This Is How The Wind Shifts" is a good listen for fans but most definitely runs that risk.

25 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Rawrness
    I am surprised this didn't get a better review considering all the good things I've been hearing about this at the moment. In any case, I am excited to hear this.
    danirvana
    In my opinion this album deserves better numbers, anyway nice review, im expecting a great live shows with this songs!
    iammclovin
    I personally love this album. It's challenging ASITS for my favourite album. I realize that not everyone is going to love this but Silverstein has delivered again!!
    DavesCrusade
    Maybe I just read it too fast, but where does the slightly negative review come from? What part of the album gives it a 6 or a 7? I get that maybe they won't get as many new fans from this, but the review had nothing but good things to say about the album, it seems. I haven't listened to it except for the two songs posted here (they released these early, anyway) and as a fan since When Broken Is Easily Fixed, I got pretty excited for it. Still seems like an album worth checking out.
    blake1221
    A 6 or 7 isn't slightly negative. I think you're too used to any decent album receiving an 8 or a 9. Those numbers should be harder to earn as it is. A 6 or a 7 just means that nothing is incredibly wrong with it, while there are certainly areas for improvement.
    Tomozaurus
    Thank you. I'm pretty sick, in reviews of any media, of seeing reviews of things where it's just like "I liked this. 9/10." Save those ratings for true ground-breaking, stuff.
    DavesCrusade
    That was my mistake. I didn't mean to come off that way, I was actually seriously looking for answers. Like, what specifically brought it down to a 6 or a 7? In the review, I could only see one negative thing. That's all I was getting at. I didn't mean come off as a 6 or 7 is bad, I just wanted to know specifically what deserved the rating.
    Metallidethium
    I am tired of reviews being rated 8 or 9 when they should be 6 or 7 but this is turning out to be my favorite Silverstein album and I gave it a 9.
    the_resistance
    the two songs in the review were really good but i REALLY didn't like rescue. to anyone who has this album, if shipwreck was my favorite of theirs would i like this?
    headbang123
    I like it a lot but as far as newer Silverstein records go, I definetely like Shipwreck in the Sand and Rescue better. But you have to keep in mind that this is their 7th record and the fact that they still have enough ideas to make a record like this is remarkable. It's better than the new Aiden and a LOT better than the new Senses Fail.
    Bair
    How would you know? Senses fail isn't going to be released until March 26, 2013 and their newest album was a greatest hits. Get it straight.
    HH_Emo_666
    I really wouldn't consider a "Greatest Hits" cd an actual album. It's just a poor, pathetic, and shitty way to make money. He was probably refering to the last album they actually made.
    'xander vasil
    This is most definitely the strongest Silverstein release in years. Shipwreck was great. Rescue was great, but it just felt like a bunch of songs and not a cohesive album. I'm in love with this record.
    BwareDWare94
    I used to love this band, and still have a soft spot for them, but until Shane Told drops the adolescent lyrics, I can't honestly listen and sing along to some of their songs. He's such a talented frontman, but I need to see his lyrics hit the level of maturity they should be at by now.
    Sam Rulez D00d
    I don't mind it, to be honest. He's been doing it for so long that it just seems right to me I guess haha
    HH_Emo_666
    I listened to a couple of songs of Spotify briefly. This to me seems like their heavest and also poppiest album to date. My favorite album is either DtWF or A&D
    Metallidethium
    I still think Rescue was heavier but I think this is the best combination of pop and heavy that they've managed to this date
    HH_Emo_666
    One thing I didn't like about the songs I listened to were the lyrics were kind of weak. I grew up lsitening to Silverstein's first two albums, and it seems like their lyrics never really changed. Like just listening to some of the songs, the lyrics are already in your head before he spits them out.
    _KurtCobain_77
    Honestly, other then A&D, Silverstein has been pretty consistent IMO in quality of albums (DtW was one of my favourite albums of middle school, which left me let down with A&D). I never expect them to be a Co&Ca where every album is a new journey, but more like Bayside, where I know what I'm going to get even before I listen to it.
    TheBigDirty716
    I saw these guys play with August Burns Red and after that i really don't like them. just gotta say they were really insulting the crowd. pretty crappy attitude to have considering they're the reason you get to travel all over and play music as a job.
    iammclovin
    I've seen them live 4-5 times now and have never seen them take that attitude. They were very nice, took pictures, came out after the set to meet fans, and signed autographs without hesitation.
    Sam Rulez D00d
    I saw them on that same tour and loved them. I met them afterwards and they were really nice dudes.
    Metallidethium
    I've seen them twice and they've always been incredibly nice and just kept playing song after song and seemed to love what they do. Could you be confusing them with someone else?
    DavesCrusade
    Agreed with all these others, the time I saw them they were headlining and were pretty nice. Took pictures afterwards and what not. It was a Halloween show, and they came out and did like half the show dressed like Hollywood Undead. Pretty funny. Although I guess that last part is kind of unrelated.