Friday, April 19, 2024
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ALBUM REVIEW: Story Of The Year Release “Tear Me To Pieces”

Story Of The Year photo by Ryan Phillips.

 

–by Robert Wilkins

St. Lous’ own, Story of the Year are releasing a brand-new record tomorrow titled Tear Me to Pieces. It is their first new record since 2017’s Wolf. The band currently consists of Dan Marsala (lead vocals), Ryan Phillips (lead guitarist), Adam Russel (bass) and Josh Wills (Drums).

When researching the band I read a story about how they got in a fight with the roadies of another band while on tour in the early 2000’s. Right then I had the idea that I was going to like these guys. I figured that a band that was that intense would most likely be playing some aggressive music that I would like. Boy was I right.

The album started on a killer note. The song “Tear Me to Pieces” begins with an acoustic guitar and some great vocals from Dan Marsala. It doesn’t take long for the rest of the band to kick in. Full attack mode! The song sounds like they were able to put a whole new pop-punk twist on early 2000’s nu metal. It’s my favorite song from the record to be sure.

“Glow” is another full-on rocker from this album. The softer parts of the song are very emo or pop punk oriented, but the song also has some great metal riffs and some guttural screams from Marsala. The amazing thing about this song is that it is very heavy, fast and aggressive yet still has enough of a pop sound to be radio friendly.

The song “2005” is a huge switch in gears from the songs that come before it on the record.  If I didn’t know better it could be a totally different band playing this song. If I had to categorize it I would call it a great power pop song. It definitely evokes memories of a less complicated time in life when we were all a little younger and more carefree.

“Sorry About Me” starts as an acoustic ballad that sounds more like what I would expect of a mellow song from the band. (Possibly because the song builds, and some harder electric guitar riffs make an appearance.) The song, however, never truly loses the ballad vibe and flat-out rocks.

“Knives Out” quickly takes the album back to the barnburner kind of melodic nu metal present on earlier songs. This tune is most likely the hardest song on the album but also has plenty of hooks to be a smash on rock radio. If it were up to me, this song and “Tear Me To Pieces” would be the first two singles from the record.

The album ends with the ballad called “Use Me”. The track even has what sounds like some sort of string arrangement. It is very well written, performed and produced. If one were to follow the formula of the hard rock bands of the 80’s and early 90’s, the first two singles would be the aforementioned “Tear Me To Pieces” and “Knives Out” followed by this ballad. It seems to be a tried-and-true formula and I think these songs are good and radio friendly enough to propel this band to the next level.

I have to say I was very impressed by this album and in the words of the immortal Macho Man Savage “I don’t impress very easily!” I would have no problem spending my own hard-earned money to buy this record and I have to believe this band is even better live. Be sure to give them a listen and keep an eye out for them coming through your town on the heels of the new record.

(EDITOR NOTE:) Story Of The Year will be playing a sold-out show this Saturday at The Pageant in their hometown of St. Louis before they head overseas. For those lucky enough to have tickets you will be in for one Hell of a show (as usual from these guys.) If you don’t have a ticket watch out for our review and pics from the show.

Track Listing:

  • Tear Me to Pieces
  • Real Life
  • Glow
  • Dead and Gone
  • War
  • Can’t Save You
  • 2005
  • Sorry About Me
  • Take the Ride
  • Knives Out
  • Use Me

 

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