Review:: Feel | Sleeping With Sirens

/* Style Definitions */
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”;
mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;

For the past few years, Sleeping With Sirens have been a heavyweight in the scene following the monstrous successes of two albums, an acoustic EP, Warped Tour stints, and nationwide gigs.

For their third full-length release, Feel, the refinement and progression that we saw between their debut With Ears to See and Eyes to Hear to their sophomore Let’s Cheers to This is present, strong, and taken even further.

Feel begins with the title track, and within the first seconds of the record, there is a different feel to the band’s sound. And yes, pun intended.

Whereas Let’s Cheers to This began with feedback and a heavy drum kick, Feel gives us Kellin Quinn’s trademark vocals, drawn in over an electronic programming swirl before the addition of the guitar duo of Jack Fowler and Jesse Lawson. For as gentle as it begins, by the end, it’s a string-laden, soaring track.

“Free Now” leans pretty close to the pop side of the spectrum, which gives Quinn’s vocals a newer venue to shine and lyrically shows us his newfound paternal instincts. The first use of screams on the album come at the end of the track, but are tucked into the background as support rather than being the main focus.

Of the three collaborations, two of them work on paper and two of them work on plastic. The inclusion of MGK on “Alone” stands out in the tracklisting, but manages to work out pretty well. Matty Mullins’ part on “Congratulations” makes sense, but something about the track itself just falls a bit short. “I’ll Take You There” with Shayley Bourget (ex-Of Mice & Men) nails it, delivering in prime Sleeping With Sirens fashion.

While there isn’t the same heaviness throughout most of Feel that we’ve gotten from older Sleeping With Sirens work, it isn’t nonexistent. With the second portion of the album, there’s more of what we had with the first two albums. Tracks like “These Things I’ve Done” and “The Best There Ever Was,” as well as parts of “Low” and “Déjà Vu,” feature the on-and-off swapping of gritty and clean vocals, heavy guitars, and forceful drumming that the group has shown us in the past.

The two closing songs, “Sorry” and “Satellites,” conclude Feel in the same manner that “All My Heart” and “Let’s Cheers to This” tied up the last album. First is the gentle piano-rich ballad, followed by the soaring finale. This dynamic worked wondrously in the past, so a recurrence of it here makes sense and does not disappoint. Both tracks provide striking performances by all five members and end the album on a high note.

In total honesty, Feel took some getting used to. My first listen left me a bit dissatisfied and borderline teased. It wasn’t fully what I was expecting, and I wasn’t as quickly hooked as I was with their other records. But then I gave it another chance; a second listen, a third, a fourth, and with each came a new level of approval. It grew on me. Feel is layered, developed, matured material from a band that knew it had a statement to make.

Release Date: June 4th, 2013
Rating: 3.5/5
Runtime: 43 minutes

Track List:
1. Feel
2. Here We Go
3. Free Now
4. Alone (Feat. MGK)
5. I’ll Take You There (Feat. Shayley Bourget)
6. The Best There Ever Was
7. Low
8. Congratulations (Feat. Matty Mullins)
9. Deja Vu
10. These Things I’ve Done
11. Sorry
12. Satellites

Sleeping With Sirens is:
Kellin Quinn – Vocals
Jack Fowler – Lead Guitar
Jesse Lawson – Rhythm Guitar
Justin Hills – Bass
Gabe Barham – Drums

Written By: Eric Riley

Sleeping With Sirens Announce New Album, “Feel”


Track Listing:

1. Feel
2. Here We Go
3. Free Now
4. Alone (FEAT. MGK)
5. I’ll Take You There (FEAT. Shayley Bourget)
6. The Best There Ever Was
7. Low
8. Congratulations (FEAT. Matty Mullins)
9. Deja Vu
10. These Things I’ve Done
11. Sorry
12. Satellites

To Be Released: June 4th