I’m so close to liking CURSES, but I’m so close to not caring about them at all. It’s so difficult. On the one hand, they have provided this album that contains some pretty decent chorus work (not exactly my favorite, but I respect the hustle), and on the other hand, I can only hear so many fucking open notes and big shotgun blast snare breakdowns before I have to just give up listening to Chapter I: Introspect (Out now, Imminence Records) out of sheer boredom.
Not only is the music pretty homogeneous the whole way through, but I just can’t get behind the actual audio production either, which is unfortunate. If your quality is lacking, then I’m already not on board whatever ship you’re sailing. I find that bands tend to not realize just how important audio production is anymore. Just because your guitarist learned how to track demos does not mean you shouldn’t go to a professional studio. However, I have no knowledge of how this band recorded this album, but it’s still less than stellar.
Another point that I really feel I need to bring up is the lyrical content. I simply cannot get behind the “Don’t ever give up, you got this. You can do it.”, and the “I’m trying so hard, but the walls are caving in.” monikers. That seems like such a middle school concept. I’m all about positive vibes and having a goal in mind to help people with your message, but there are much more eloquent ways of conveying a lesson that will impart so much more impact to your audience. Yet, even if I don’t give two shits about the concepts therein, I always have to admit that there is a part of the general public out there that does, so this particular gripe is more of an opinion at best if anything.
I’d also love for bands to be careful about who they feature on their albums with guest spots. There’s a very interesting problem with who they secured for the song “Fortune Collapse”. It’s not that the feature was bad; in fact, it’s the exact opposite that’s the problem. Spencer Sotelo (PERIPHERY) came in and KNOCKED THE CHORUS OUT OF THE PARK. He completely overshadowed the band’s vocal abilities to the point where I can clearly hear the difference between a ‘singer’, and someone who can ‘sing’, and that hurts the rest of the choruses, because I like their vocalist’s more “masculine” approach to singing, but he simply is not as in control and confident in his delivery, which hurts the soundscape as a whole.
Okay, all the negativity aside (because no one can be an asshole for this long), this album is solid for the most part. It might be really similar throughout, but they do display some pretty efficient songwriting talent that a lot of bands couldn’t keep up with these days, decent enough production to get by to most people’s ears, and enough catchy-ness in MOST of the choruses to be memorable. It was a solid effort, but in my eyes, just not enough to really grip me.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Fortune Collapse”, “The Lowest Level Of Loyalty”