Pumpehuset, Copenhagen, DEN - 16/12
Dead By April
Written by: PP on 02/11/2011 06:27:18
It's been a couple of years now since the Swedish sensation Dead By April blockbustered to the top of their national charts with a sound that was part Sonic Syndicate, part emo, and part pop on their self-titled debut album. It was a record that dangled between reaaaallly poppy melodeath and straight up pop rock while cashing in on all latest production trends in the industry. It may have been a superfluous release in the grand scheme of things, but at least it was catchy; it's an impressive achievement for any band to permanently imprint a chorus ("Angels Of Clarity") into the mind of a reviewer who goes through hundreds of records a year.
Their debut album consisted mostly of re-recorded demos and older songs dating back many years prior to its release, so it said nothing about their ability to churn out catchy songs in an assembly line-like fashion every two years or so. Enter "Incomparable", their sophomore album and their first real test as a band, a record which unfortunately is a classic example in ambition far exceeding talent. Whatever drops of 'metal' were audible on their debut have now been booted out in favour of an expression which pretty much represents the ultimate cash-grab on the current musical trends within teenagers. Autotune, cinematic electronics, polished production, high-pitched emo croons predictably alternated with harsh croons, and tons and tons of pop is shamelessly used throughout the album, complemented with borderline awful lyrics ("I am missing you, more than yesterday, I am missing you, more than yesterday, yesterday, yesterday. More than yesterday, yesterday, yesterday." on "More Than Yesterday"). It's all very shallow and superficial; artistic integrity might just as well be an alien planet in connection with "Incomparable".
In effect, "Incomparable" sounds exactly like you'd expect for a unit put together through one of those idiotic talent competitions like X-Factor, American Idol, Popstars, who were then given a pseudo-metal backdrop to sing on top of. The glimpses of metalcore on the album are so toothless and generic that at this point in time, there's no reason to think of Dead By April as anything else than a modern equivalent of the classic 90s boy band.
Download: Crossroads, Calling, Incomparable
For the fans of: A neon-coloured Westlife with emo haircuts
Release date 21.09.2011