Since The Story So Far is one of the leading bands in the pop punk scene, it is no surprise that the world lost it when there was talk of a new album in the works. When the record itself dropped, the world went absolutely crazy over the music that the band had brought to life through this album, but is it as miraculous as everyone says? Let’s find out. The album itself holds certain aspects of the band’s characteristic sound, which will help older fans connect with the release; however, most of the tracks on the album pull an innovative and evolutionary light. This will allow the band to appeal more listeners, for the album doesn’t sit strictly in the pop punk genre of music. This album retains the strong instrumentals that the band is known for, and this is heard throughout most of the tracks where the instrumentalists allow for a louder dynamic as the vocalist belts his vocals to give a larger than life sound, but that sound is contained, which is strong, for it doesn’t feel out of character. This album lacks the tradition juxtaposition of words to instrumentals through strategic silence. These punches on previous releases helped the band to really send home their selections that would be perfection for live performances. So, for this album, the band gives audience members songs that they can vibe along to instead of scream their heart out to. This shift doesn’t move audience members too far from their old sound, but it does take away from what made The Story So Far so impactful. The lyrical content of this album surrounds the idea of substance use and how that action makes one feel. This topic is very common within the music community across almost every genre right now; thus, this would make this album more conceptually appealing to many, which will help the album become successful. Overall, I would give this album a 4 out of 5 stars. I, by no means, think this album is bad. This record, musically speaking, gives the audience catchy lyrical lines, interesting melodic, instrumental riffs, and contrast from heavy to softer ballads; however, this album sings in more of an average light, and The Story So Far is anything but ordinary, so I was just expecting a tad more, especially when comparing this release to their other musical masterpieces.
“Proper Dose”, “Let It Go”, and “If I Fall”
This album pulls away from the band’s cherished characteristic sound a great deal; however, that doesn’t mean that certain tracks won’t shed light to those old tactics that helped the band pack a punch through their music. So, as one listens to the album, these specified tracks stick out slightly because they have a bit of a bite to them while staying true to the band’s new and old sound, which will help them become the staple for this record. Additionally, these selections give the audience a nice taste of the lyrical concept of the album, so if you’re looking for the synopsis of the album, these tracks would be you go-to.
When one first glances at the album artwork to say that it is inviting is an understatement. When looking at this album for the first time, it is easily said to be aesthetically pleasing, which is more than fantastic for the band, for before an audience member even listens to a second of the music on the album, they are going to be inclined to dive into it, for the album cover looks, fresh, clean, and just cool to put it bluntly. When connecting the music from the album to the artwork, the two are a perfect match. The album art depicts this euphoric, pastoral scene, something that would be seen in either one’s dreams or in the movies. This concept is enhanced by the musical content of the album, for the bulk of lyrical content that drives this records falls in the realm of being detached from the real world whether that be by the use of a substance or not. Since the title of the album is “Proper Dose”, it is no surprise that the lyrical content wavers over the topic of the use of substances and how the use of such makes one feel. So, when connecting that conceptual idea with that of the album artwork, it can be said that the two only increase the success of the other, which marks this as perfect cover art for the record.
*”Proper Dose” was released on September 21, 2018 through Pure Noise Records.