BYO Split Series, Vol. 5 review by Split Series

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  • Released: Apr 20, 2004
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 5.9 (9 votes)
Split Series: BYO Split Series, Vol. 5

Sound — 8
This album is a Split album between the emotional punk rockers Alkaline Trio and the relatively unheard of One Man Army. Released after the highly acclaimed 'Good Mourning' it should give a pretty good indication of what to expect from the next album. The 'Trio really have done a fine job here. The 6 songs on offer from the band sound quite frankly breathtaking. As emotional as you'd expect from any Alkaline Trio album and in particular one song, 'Sadie', could possibly be the best Alkaline Trio song to date. It is a slow, beautiful, emotional parody which includes the use of violins and really is fantastic. In my opinion the album's worth buying just for this song. 'Fine Without You' is a solid if not deppressing introduction the album as it is about coping with a lost love. Unlike most pop punk bands however you feel like you can take their songs on subjects such as this more seriously than pathetic commercial, unoriginal bands like Blink 182. 'Dead and Broken' is a more upbeat song with a naturally punky vibe but not in the classical sense. The One Man Army half of the album is unoriginal and boring. Saddly they drag the possible rating of 5 to a 4 for the sound.

Lyrics — 10
As you would expect from alkaline trio album, the lyrics are sarcastic and put a sadistically dark but emotive perspective on the concept of love. Alkaline Trio are undoubtedly an under-rated band and the lyrics here prove that I think. One Man Army's lyrics aren't all that bad really when you break them down. They are clearly just an inferior version of the 'Trio however but the lyrics still maintain a 5 because Alkaline Trio's lyrics are so strong and poeticly brilliant.

Overall Impression — 8
Well I would give this album an overall rating of 5 if it was purely an Alkaline Trio CD. Saddly however, One Man Army clog up the remaining half with dull heard-it-all-before wannabe punk tunes that are frankly un-interesting and drop the rating. Still, for half an album a rating of 4 is pretty damn impressive. 'Sadie' is unquestionably a must hear and I think shows what the band are really capable of when they put their minds to it. It even stands up to their almighty classic hit 'Radio'. I was a semi Alkaline Trio fan before I must admit, but this has fully converted me. It is definitely worth the price tag even for just 6 Alkaline Trio songs, enjoy!

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