Tuesday, April 7, 2015

All Time Low- Future Hearts

Hey, y'all! It's time for me to talk about another CD on my shelf! As always, I put my iTunes on shuffle, and the CD containing the first song that played is the one I'll be talking about!

NOPE. This is a very special CDs On My Shelf, where I discuss the CD that I've been eagerly anticipating for quite a while. AKA: Y'ALL, MY FAVORITE BAND'S NEW CD CAME OUT TODAY!!!!!!!!!

Release Date: April 7th, 2015
Genre: Pop punk, Alternative

When I bought the CD: Pre-ordered it! (But heard all of the songs about a week before its official release)

Track Listing
  1. Satellite
  2. Kicking & Screaming
  3. Something's Gotta Give
  4. Kids in the Dark
  5. Runaways
  6. Missing You
  7. Cinderblock Garden
  8. Tidal Waves (Feat. Mark Hoppus)
  9. Don't You Go
  10. Bail Me Out (Feat. Joel Madden)
  11. Dancing With a Wolf
  12. The Edge of Tonight
  13. Old Scars/ Future Hearts

All Time Low is:
Alex Gaskarth- vocals, guitar
Jack Barakat- guitar
Zack Merrick- bass
Rian Dawson- drums/percussion

L-R: Rian, Alex, Jack, Zack

About All Time Low: 
[Stolen from my posts on their other CDs]
All Time Low was formed in 2003 when all four guys were still in high school. One day, they were all just jamming together and decided to form a band. Their "first" CD, The Party Scene, came out in 2005, but it's not really considered most of the time when discussing All Time Low's discography. They then released Put Up or Shut Up, an EP, in 2006. They have released 4 more CDs: So Wrong, It's Right in 2007, Nothing Personal in 2009, Dirty Work in 2011, and Don't Panic in 2012. All four members of the band have been in the band from the beginning, which I think is pretty significant for a band that's already 11 years old.

My Opinion about All Time Low:
[Once again, stolen from my posts about their CDs]
I talk a lot about how McFly is my favorite band... but I've failed to mention that I have two favorite bands... and clearly, All Time Low is the other one. If forced to choose between the two, I would choose McFly, but All Time Low definitely also holds the title of my favorite band. I've been listening to them since junior high, and they're the only band that has consistently been one of my top 3 bands since then. Even McFly can't say that. Alex Gaskarth is absolutely hilarious, and a total Harry Potter nerd, which I think is super awesome. He's definitely my favorite in the band just for that. And of course, everyone loves Jack. He's the crazy goofball, and no one can get enough of his hilarious antics. And the skunk hair. It will never die! Also, Rian Dawson and Cassadee Pope are actually the cutest couple ever. I approved immediately when I heard they were together. Adorable.

About the CD:  
As you will notice, this CD came out today! I've been listening to it non-stop and decided that it would be fun to actually choose a CD to talk about for once rather than choosing randomly. This CD is a really interesting one. I feel like there are a lot of different things going on with it. I have a hard time categorizing this within All Time Low's discography of music. There are moments when I feel like songs are very familiar, but others when I feel like this is a totally different sound for them. 

I was beginning to get really worried about this CD. They released Something's Gotta Give, Kids in the Dark, Runaways, and Tidal Waves and I was very underwhelmed. None of them were bad, but they were all very expected. They definitely had ATL's normal sound, but without the excitement that usually accompanies one of their songs. Of the four of them, they're generally each perfectly good songs on their own, but when they were all released one after the other, I started worrying that the entire CD would sound the same. Fortunately, that couldn't be further from the truth. I'm not going to go into a comparison to other All Time Low CDs, because I do plan on doing a ranking of all of them soon, but I do really like this CD overall.

As always, I'm going to give each song a rating out of 10 and then give a brief explanation of why it got that rating. 

*Disclaimer: I've only been listening to most of these songs for about a week. I usually don't post on CDs this soon after their release because it typically takes me a while to solidify my opinions on songs. So I was a little generous on this, and my opinions will probably continue varying for a while until I settle into my long-term feelings. *

Satellite- 9/10.
This one is really interesting because it features distorted guitar and vocals, which is really unusual for All Time Low. It's a little bit more gritty of a sound, which I feel is one of the new sounds that ATL introduces on this CD. And it features brief screaming. Not hardcore by any stretch of the imagination, but definitely rougher than the usual All Time Low song. 
Kicking & Screaming- 9.5/10. 
This has a sound that is fairly "Don't Panic" but with a good mix of the grittier Future Hearts sound. That's probably why I enjoy this song so much, because the Don't Panic sound is my favorite, and I really love this new, grittier sound.
Something's Gotta Give- 8.5/10.
I tried to categorize this song within the All Time Low discography, but found myself grasping at straws. Maybe it just sounds so familiar now because I've played it a lot, but it feels very All Time Low. I feel that the sound on this one is also a new sound that they introduced on this CD, and it's the exact opposite of the other one. That's all grit while this one is really smooth.
Kids in the Dark- 9/10. 
This song makes me think of Time Bomb and some other songs on Dirty Work. Fortunately, it's the good songs on Dirty Work. Even though it was released amidst some underwhelming songs, this one is really fun and I enjoy it.
Runaways- 8.5/10.
This one, I feel, has the same sound as Something's Gotta Give. It's very... glossy. I'm not sure that's the right word, but the vocals are very smooth and it's got a much softer sound than the grittier songs on the CD. There are a few electronic sounds thrown in and even the bass sounds softer. I'm not quite sure how I feel about this yet. I don't dislike it, but it's not my favorite All Time Low sound ever.
Missing You- 8.5/10.
Once again, I get the Something's Gotta Give vibe from this one. It's obviously very different from Something's Gotta Give, but it has the same, softer, poppier sound. Even though it's fairly out of place in ATL's discography, it doesn't really sound out of place. It's got a kinda folk-pop vibe that I actually kinda like.
Cinderblock Garden- 9.5/10.
This song sounds very All Time Low. That probably sounds odd to say, since these are all obviously songs by All Time Low, but I feel like there are so many elements in this song that are so essential to All Time Low as a band.
Tidal Waves (Feat. Mark Hoppus)- 7.5/10.
This is another one with the softer sound. It's also my least favorite. It has some Nothing Personal elements because of the electronic sound to the chorus, but it's nowhere near as exciting as Nothing Personal. I just feel like the song never really builds to something. It just kinda flat-lines.
Don't You Go- 10/10.
I love this one. It sounded very familiar but not because it was similar to All Time Low songs. It is a little, but Alex's vocal style reminds me a little of Billie Joe. This definitely has more of the grittier Future Hearts sound, and I love it. It has a splash of Dirty Work, but in a good way.
Bail Me Out (Feat. Joel Madden)- 9/10. 
This song just makes me think of Good Charlotte. And not just because Joel is on it. I feel like the music is also very Good Charlotte as well. It definitely has some of the softer sound to it, but the fact that it's mixed with a Good Charlotte-esque sound elevates it above the other songs with that vibe.
Dancing With a Wolf- 10/10.
This. Song. Hands down, my absolute favorite song on the CD. It's got the grittier sound to it and it's just so great. It's got just the slightest tinge of an electronic sound to it, which is actually super cool. It's just so fun and such a jam song.
The Edge of Tonight- 8.5/10.
I had to give this one a little time. Initially, I was like "Nope, too much pop. Don't want to listen kbye." But the chorus is really great. Overall, the song definitely has that softer sound, but the chorus almost makes up for the overly poppy verses.
Old Scars/ Future Hearts- 10/10.
The sound on this one is extremely similar to the one on Satellite. They're the most gritty songs on the CD and I love it. Also, I keep feeling like Alex's vocals have a Billie Joe-esque sound on this CD. I'm not sure why. But yeah, this one is really great. I think ATL should explore this grittier sound a bit more. I'm a big fan.

Favorite Songs: Dancing With a Wolf, Don't You Go, Old Scars/ Future Hearts

Least Favorite Songs: Tidal Waves.


Kids in the Dark music video

Something's Gotta Give music video

Rating: 8.5/10. I know that this isn't exactly the average of all of the ratings, but it's certainly the most common rating. I like this CD, but I have some mixed feelings about it. I'm definitely going to be jamming to it and blasting it for quite a while, because I do genuinely like it, but I really wish that they had explored the grittier sounds more because those were really great.

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