I didn’t come into this with very high expectations. The whole, ‘Electronica/Metalcore’ thing got a little lost on me over the years, so it’s not something I actively seek out in music anymore, however, I SEE STARS does NOT fuck around when it comes to this stuff. Good lord. Treehouse (June 17, Sumerian Records) is a surprisingly pleasant, coherent, and polished album from front to back.
There are a few bands out there these days trying to crank out the ‘Electroni-Core’ thingy, but I honestly don’t believe anyone is doing it with near as much taste as I SEE STARS. While it’s definitely not for everyone, this eclectic franken-genre really brings out the best elements of the band, and I personally think it’s where they really shine. They’re not here to play in some crazy time signatures, use crazy key changes, or tune their instruments the lowest. They’re just some dudes making catchy ass songs, and that’s totally okay. I find myself humming or singing several parts from the album throughout the day, and I continually want to revisit those parts in the full spectrum of the album.
For all my praise, this album isn’t perfect, but I only think it has trouble in one particular spot. The song “All In” is a little too reliant on newer rap trends and ‘hype’ tricks like the almost signature Drake move, adding a “Whoo!” after a verse, or the lazy lyric delivery that is associated with nearly every rapper in the top 40 spot these days. Again, I want to say this is only a minor thing, as the song just doesn’t happen to be my particular taste. I don’t think it’s inherently bad, just not for me, so maybe it’s exactly what the next person is looking for, and the main chorus is still pretty damn bangin’.
While I wasn’t expecting to receive this body of work, I’m glad I did. It’s definitely a fun thing to listen to, and I’m really curious to see how it plays out in a live setting. I may not be a huge fan, but this is certainly an album that’s going to stay in my collection for a long long time. I’ll probably throw it on at any parties I’m forced to go to, so I can crowd-kill and twerk at the same damn time.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Mobbin’ Out”, “Calm Snow”, “Running With Scissors”