It all started back in 2004 when I was introduced to Emery with their debut, The Weak's End. They were the epitome of emo-core filled with heart-wrenching screams, extremely moving lyrics, and an unforgettable live show. And it seems to just keep getting better with the addition of their latest release, ...In Shallow Seas We Sail.
The album blasts open the doors with "Cutthroat Collapse," which is classic Emery - nothing but hard growls blended with lovely melodies and lyrics as meaningful as they come. It's a great listen and gets you ready for what's to come. As always, the band sends a strong message to the listener. "Inside Our Skin" reminds believers to not just be happy in life, but to do the Lord's will, while "A Sin To Hold On To" focuses on making the right choices no matter how hard that may be. Also, "Open Hands, Closed Eyes," a track with a club/pop feel to it (which comes out nicely) sings of the depravity of people using material possessions to make themselves feel good.
Another thing that Emery does well is tell the tales of boys, girls, and relationships. "Curbside Goodbye" and "Piggy Bank Lies" follow that trend beautifully. The former talks about a break-up situation while the latter is about catching the girl who's been caught cheating. The characteristic meaningful lyrics are ever present, such as "This is where you say it's not what it looks like" and "But sometimes you find that you cannot control your heart or regain the person that you were from the start." That being said, "I've Got A Way" takes the cake in the dealing with relationships department of the album. Risks are taken musically, the words put you right at the scene, and it comes off with a touch of a radio-friendly vibe which makes it the best listen on ...In Shallow Seas We Sail.
Emery takes the tiniest of footsteps when it comes to musical change with a few violins on "Twelve & Fading" and a rhythmic blending of both Toby and Devin's vocals in a catchy way on "The Poor & The Prevalent." Plus, the addition of the two best tracks from last year's EP make this a complete listen. And while there is not a lot here that you wouldn't find on some previous Emery albums, this just does it all a little bit better. Most of the tracks are lyrically moving while still remaining catchy, a difficult feat to accomplish. And with lyrics like "I've got this big hole in my heart - I wanted to put you in, but for some reason you just wouldn't fit" how could you not enjoy it? Emery is a stellar band and ...In Shallow Seas We Sail puts them into a category of their own.- Review date: 5/28/09, written by Kevin Hoskins of Jesusfreakhideout.com
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