Sound — 8
Sleeping With Sirens, formed in 2009, is a relatively new post-hardcore band hailing from Orlando, Florida. Led by Kellin Quinn's powerful, feminine (in a good way) vocals, this band sure packs a punch. They are as hard-hitting as ever in "Feel," their third album. The fast tempos and simple distorted riffs create a heart-pumping atmosphere that keeps the party going all night long.
Though the riffs are simple and guitar solos are virtually non-existent, Sleeping With Sirens shows a high level of musicianship. When Quinn's powerful vocals are not smacking you in the face, the guitars take his place. While these descriptions may be indicative of the post-hardcore genre in general, I would definitely say that this album is far above the average. Kellin Quinn's vocals, especially, help this album stand out above the rest. His unique voice perpetuates the fun from beginning to end. It is easy to hear the feeling and soul in his voice, distinguishing him from the typical modern punkish voice easily seen in Periphery's Spencer Sotelo among others.
On the guitar side of the equation, the heavily distorted tone remains constant throughout the album. When listened to closely, it is hard to find a large degree of dynamics in the guitars, yet if the listener pays attention to the song as a whole, this is not apparent. In keeping with tradition (kind of), the introduction of the songs features the best guitar work where the main riff is apparent. In the verses and chorus, primarily power chords are used to provide texture and a backbone for the vocals. This less-is-more mentality adds to the value of each song individually. Basically, the guitars are plainly prevalent when they should be and it is easy to pay attention to the vocals when it is warranted.
On the other side of the instrumental equation, hardly noticeable keyboards thicken the sound and add a nice texture in some of the songs. The drums, while not groundbreaking, fit the songs very well. My opinion of them is high because they appear to change constantly between the songs. Honestly, they probably dont change that often but they, like everything else on the album, is a cut above the average performance. On a side note, the first song on the album eases the listener into the record and then every song thereafter begins with the usual heart-pumping beat. This is opposed to starting the first song in this fashion which could result in the proverbial punch to the gut of the listener who may be unprepared for what they are about to hear.
Lyrics — 9
After a little bit of research, I found that Kellin Quinn is considered to have a Leggiero Tenor vocal range. And boy does it make sense. His combination of power and pitch is unlike what I have ever heard before. I mean, there are a multitude of singers who sound similar but I have never heard a voice of this sort with as perfect a combination as Kellin has.
Aside from his vocal ability, I thought that his harmonies were well placed throughout the songs and that his melodies fit the music just as well. The lyrics did not have the same effect on me though, again, the melody by which he sang the lyrics did. The lyrical rhyming scheme somewhat impressed but their content isn't new. Of course, the Sex, Drugs, Rock and Roll mantra hasn't lost steam since it started so the lyrics are definitely not the worst thing that they could have done. They're just not groundbreaking or soulful.
My favorite lyrics (sexually explicit depending on your standard) are from "Dj Vu":
"You know I love it when your hair's pulled back
Ugh, it drives me crazy
You know I love it when you look like that
Tell me what you want to do.
You know I love to get the sheets messed up
Put your hands on my chest because it might get rough
Don't stop me baby 'til you've had enough
Come on, come on, come on!
With my hands all over you
There's nothing I can do
Feels like were having dj, dj vu
Got my hands all over you
There's nothing I can do
It's like we're having dj, dj vu!"
Overall Impression — 8
Overall, "Feel" is definitely Sleeping With Sirens' best album yet. The only poor tracks in my opinion are the last two, "Sorry" and "Satellites" because I do not think that Sleeping with Sirens does ballads really well. The best tracks are "Here We Go," "Dj Vu," and "These Things I've Done." Each of these tracks shows the best collection of riffs and vocals on the album. The drums, keyboard, and bass remain fairly constant. Again, though the drumming style is constant across the album, it is well calculated and executed, leading to an above average experience. On a different note, the word "feel" is used throughout the album taking the listener back to the album's title, bringing a unity to the album.
To sum it all up, "Feel" brings the party all night long.