Cage The Elephant – Melophobia


Artist

Album

Melophobia

Label

RCA Records

Year

2013

Genre

For Fans Of

Arctic Monkeys - The White Stripes - The Vines

Summary

This record is subtle, but has staying power, something new for Cage The Elephant.

Rating

80 / 100

Let’s get it clear. I See Stars are generic post-hardcore with a capital G. With their debut being what one could call ‘snore-core’ for its lack of originality and depth, the band has pushed on to a FOURTH release. Have they kept the same breakdown (it’s meant to be singular for a reason) and electronic samples for ‘New Demons’? Yes, yes they have.
 

After a brief intro track that leads into ‘Ten Thousand Feet’, you’ll know where this album is heading. All hail the chug! But in all seriousness, it’s terrible. It starts with a breakdown you’ve heard before and the same open string chug that’s been beaten to death a million times by other bands in the genre. The screams eventually come in, shouting some angst-filled lyrics you’ve already heard previously. But, there’s that good ol’ electronic, techno, sample thing in the background; that brings it to life, right? No. It just blends in and feels as bland as the rest of the instruments, which is a shame. We then get to the – wait for it – a clean singing chorus. That really throws you up and makes you go wild; fucking album of the year right there (sarcasm). Talk about formula…
 

But let’s hold off. This is one song. It can’t all be that bad? Just wait.
 

Follow Your Leader’ starts and you’ll no doubt think, “Wait? Haven’t I just heard this breakdown?” You’re pretty much correct. However, you’ll find that the drummer is just hitting the snare where he was hitting the ride-cymbal beforehand. Way to mix it up, I See Stars! The songs feel like a repeat of the first track and although we could go on about all the songs or the stand outs, we’ll stop here. All the songs are pretty much rip offs of each other.
 

The full-length can’t escape the one major flaw most bands in this genre all fall for…the song length. Holy shit, mother of Mary on a chess board are the songs long! When they’re all as stale as old bread in a bakery, a four minute song average isn’t just pushing the limit, it’s annihilating it with a sub-machine gun and a pack of wolves.
 

Not even those cool and edgy samples could save this album. And be honest, they are actually kind of cool. If you took those and just made a DJ album, it would kick more ass than Danny Trejo. But they’re just filler for the already poorly filled songs. Sadly, we can’t all be ‘ Issues’ or ‘Enter Shikari’ and make that kind of stuff work.

Conclusion

With as much chug and breakdowns as a Capture the Crown release, ‘New Demons’ really falls short of just about every other release this year making it the worst album of this year. Even the latest Katy Perry album was better than this. The clean singing would be good if it wasn’t over-produced as is the case here. The screams sound under mixed, but that’s just distortion. The percussion is well, "breakdowny" and the guitarists seem to have a fear of any fret lower than three. They have ninety-nine problems and seventeen frets ain’t on that list. I See Stars have a lot of fans and loyal ones at that, but at the rate they’re going, everyone’s going to eventually ask, “What’s the point anymore?” In summary, this is definitely snore-core.

 

Tracklisting

1. Spiderhead 
2. Come A Little Closer 
3. Telescope 
4. It’s Just Forever 
5. Take It Or Leave It 
6. Halo 
7. Black Widow 
8. Hypocrite 
9. Teeth 
10. Cigarette Dreams 

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