Hands up who’s seen The Castle? You know, the most Australian movie ever. Apart from …
After the nasty legal debacle that hung over their heads during the independent release of 2013’s Common Courtesy, Floridian wrecking crew A Day To Remember aren’t down for the count just yet. On latest LP Bad Vibrations, everybody’s favourite metalcore-meets-pop-punk contenders have dusted themselves off, regrouped and stripped back their approach.
Recorded with punk rock luminaries Bill Stevenson (Descendents) and Jason Livermore (Rise Against, NOFX), fans need not worry that ADTR have drastically changed their sound on their sixth studio album. Tracks like We Got This, Bullfight and Justified keep the group’s pop-punk roots firmly in plant, with fast tempos, big hooks and just enough bite to satiate the hardcore kids. Meaty cuts like Exposed, Reassemble and the title track recall the band’s heavier moments with some stellar mid-2000’s metalcore homage. Unfortunately, it’s not all back-to-back bangers on Bad Vibrations, with sappy numbers like Naivety and Turn Off The Radio suffering from awkward, repetitive, lyrical refrains and a lack of staying power.
Bad Vibrations ticks all the boxes one has come to expect from ADTR, allowing the band to remain interesting to prospective newcomers and faithful to long-time fans.
Bad Vibrations ticks all the boxes one has come to expect from ADTR, allowing the band to remain interesting to prospective newcomers and faithful to long-time fans. However, even recruiting new talent from a production and writing perspective can’t help to shake the tag of ‘familiar territory’ on this release. The stripped-back, punk feel of pre-release single Paranoia bodes well for a new approach down the line, but overall, Bad Vibrations shows that ADTR may find it difficult to hit the high notes of their previous efforts like Homesick and For Those Who Have Heart, and stay relevant in the years to come.
Bad Vibrations is available from September 2, via ADTR Records/Epitaph.
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STANDOUT TRACKS: Bad Vibrations, We Got This, Justified