Sound — 9
Take Action! Volume 7 is more generous than ever, this time the annual charity compilation features 20 tracks and 20 videos on a featured DVD. The CD provides a wide range of music genres -- alternative, punk, indie, hardcore, and metal, presented by the best new bands. Probably the only thing that unites all of the tracks is that all of them are guitar-driven. The record starts with an impressive vocalize and a short speech from Every Time I Die's Andy Williams, followed by the band's track Werewolf from their recent album The Big Dirty. From First To Last through in some emo and hectic guitars with Two As One -- the lead-off track from their upcoming new album. The guys mix punk aggression with melodic choruses, getting the help from Josh Abraham (30 Seconds To Mars, Slayer and Velvet Revolver) in production. This Is For Real is a track with happy vibes from Motion City Soundtrack. All Time Low with Dear Maria, Count Me In! delivers some more upbeat happiness with claps and sing-along. Some tracks awake memories of other artists. Thrice provide Depech Mode-influenced electronic Digital Sea, while Their City by The Matches is inspired by plenty of bands from the early 90s, including the long-forgotten Pulp. Newport Living by Cute Is What We Aim For stands out against other tracks by marching bridges, sharp hooks and arrogant lyrics If you lie, you don't deserve to have friends. I'd say this is the band to watch out in the nearest future!
Lyrics — 8
The poetry has all the subjects that worry modern teenagers -- from usual ramblings about unrequited love to aggressive metallists with lyrics about venom and bullets, plus some innocent swearing by a few bands. Listening to plenty of new acts on the CD, I should admit that nasal type of vocals becomes more and more popular. Unfortunately this easiest way of signing doesn't always suit the bands and the music they are playing. Far not all of the vocalists want to learn to create a seal or think about the mood of the song, preferring to sing just the way it naturally goes. Roses by Meg & Dia is the only song with female vocals and I should say it is very nice to hear something feminine among such amount of guys. Not only Meg's got a nice pathetic voice, she's also diluting the rough majority of vocals on the record. In the track she prays in aid of the magic of words, singing Roses, roses sold out as the intended effect for the single. I could never think about such way of incresing the sales, but who knows, maybe it helps. Girls have always been more creative than guys!
Overall Impression — 9
Even though far not all the artists are as famous and radio played as for example Motion City Soundtrack and Every Time I Die, I can't say some of them are much worse than the others and don't deserve to be as known. This is a compilation, but it's compiled so smooth that it goes on one level from the beginning to the end. With this CD the bands get a great opportunity to become known and the listener benefits by discovering great new artists. This is definitely a good bargain for just $6.98 and a handful of great music. Besides it's nice to realize that buying the CD you help someone change the community they live in (hopefully to the good).