Woe, Is Me- Number[s] Review
In a music scene flooded with generic cookie cutter heavy screamo bands, it’s hard to find bands that aren’t reproducing the same old shit that little scenesters go crazy over… breakdowns, br00tal screams, auto-tune vocals, random electronic (techno/trance/dance/dubstep… whatever you want to call it) sections… it’s been done… and done… and done. In today’s music scene, bands gladly trade originality for what sells and what’s going to make them “big.” And no wonder there is so much hate and hostility toward this genre of metalcore. But Woe, Is Me knows that “haters gonna hate” and they don’t care. They are going to make the music they love to make. And although it may be nothing you haven’t heard before, you haven’t heard it done this well.
The album opens with a 50 second intro that certainly gets the blood pumping. And immediately the listener is bombarded with the full sound of the Atlanta septet. But once “[&] Delinquents” kicks in you’ll hear what really stands out in this band… the vocals. Particularly the clean vocals provided by the lead singer, Tyler Carter. This guy can really sing and has a ridiculous range. His voice reminds me quite a lot of Jonny Craig of Emarosa, who incidentally is featured on two tracks, “Our Number[s]” and the album closer, “Desolate [Conductor].” Contrast this with the aggressive screams of Michael B. and the intense low growls of Ben Ferris and you have the perfect mix of harmony and dissonance.
On the music side of things, the band shows some serious creativity with how they structure each song and arrange things. By layering the synth and key parts, compliments of Ben Ferris, with the programming and drumming of Austin Thorton (ex-drummer for Of Machines) the band keeps each song varied and gives them depth. The electronic parts are done very well and aren’t just tacked on to each song. The breakdowns are heavy as expected and tend to get repetitive, but with the help of the electronic and reverb heavy melodic guitar sections, don’t become annoying. The lyrics aren’t horrible by any means, but are forgettable.
Overall, Number[s] is an EXTREMELY short (not even 30 minutes), yet enjoyable album. Woe, Is Me aren’t breaking down any barriers or pushing any boundaries with their Rise/Velocity Records debut, but they are certainly making a statement that says, “We’re here to stay.”
Key tracks: “[&] Delinquents”/”Hell, Or High Water”/”I”/”Our Number[s]”
RIYL: The Devil Wears Prada/Emarosa/Sleeping With Sirens