Earlier this month, one of my favorite modern day rock bands released their fifth full length studio album, and that band is called Four Year Strong.
This album, a self-titled release, is a follow up to the “Go Down In History” EP released late last year. An EP which happens to be one of my all-time favorites. Even the title track off of it was featured on this latest album from the Boston-based Foursome.
The first part of the album comes out swingin’ with some aggressive rhythms and tunes. It’s definitely a far cry from their “Rise or Die Trying” days, but in a good way. Since their keyboardist departed, now two albums ago, the guys have had to alter their sound to make up for the adjustment.
Unfortunately, about midway through the album, the songs start to feel a bit…generic to me. Take, for instance, the song “Gravity.” It’s not necessarily a bad tune per se, it just feels like every other song in that genre that came out between the years 2002-2006.
Luckily the songs pick back up afterwards, and it becomes genuinely enjoyable again. Four Year Strong have always been known to have a heavy and more aggressive sound than most of the other bands in the so-called “pop punk” genre. To the point where I wouldn’t even classify them as such really.
As the aforementioned title track from the “Go Down in History” EP finishes off the album, I can’t help but feel like the Four Year Strong self titled release was just missing something to really make it a solid effort. Again, it’s not bad, I just feel like it could’ve been a lot better. Maybe include the song “What’s in the Box?” instead of “Gravity?” I don’t know.
I will say that I did enjoy this album a lot more than their previous effort “In Some Way, Shape, or Form.” Now that was definitely a “meh” release.
I would most certainly encourage you to catch them live in concert if you get the opportunity, as they put on a great show. They’re super energetic and connect magnificently with the crowd.
In closing, I feel like “Four Year Strong” is at least an album worth picking up and listening to. It’s certainly not a “Must Have,” but it’s still enjoyable.