Armor For Sleepâ€™s first track on â€œYouâ€™re Deadâ€, â€œCar Underwaterâ€, mixes the best of Coheed and Cambria with Brand New. The produces Machine was spot-on with eir work on this disc, making a very cohesive sounding disc still bristle with the energy of new discovery. The intensity of Armor For Sleep on each track is a force not to be denigrated; with tracks like â€œThe Truth About Heavenâ€ perfect case studies in the abilities of the band-as-writ large. Using guitar lines that would seem equally at home during a metal track for â€œRemember To Feel Realâ€, Armor For Sleep add a heaviness to the track that highlights the emotions captured by Benâ€™s vocals. â€œAwkward Last Wordsâ€ is nowhere near the tital condition would suggest, but some of the most smoothed-out, pop-friendly tracks ever cut (with the exception of analogues â€œStephenâ€ by Senses Fail and â€œHand Grenadeâ€ by the Movie Life).
Machineâ€™s work on this disc gives Armor For Sleep another chunk of inspiration; in traditional â€œemoâ€ songs like â€œStay On The Groundâ€, a minor amount of Deftones are incorporated to make the track reach a larger number of individuals. In a nod to sequencer-led acts like Anything, Girl and Sweet Pickle, â€œ A Quick Little Flightâ€ twinkles with the light of synthesizers as Ben goes into a melodramatic monologue. The electric crackly of â€œA Quick Little Flightâ€ comes back in a strong sense during â€œBasement Ghost Singingâ€, a track that is more grounded in a style of indie rock that any prior track. Each track on â€œWhat To Do When Youâ€™re Deadâ€ is prepped and ready for popular radio, and this is due not only to the pop-leanings of Armor For Sleep but also the tremendous work ethic of the band. This ethic manifests itself in a rich full sound that is more than the individuals in the band could possibly hope to create alone.
â€œThe End of A Fraudâ€, a track that is placed as the closer of this disc for a reason, is heart-wrenching and almost painful to listen. Benâ€™s vocals are no longer the sweet emo kid-style that theyâ€™ve been through the disc, but vascillating between reminiscing and utterly destroyed. This mini-epic ends with a little of retro flourish, using a falsetto second set of vocals to create a nice dichotomy. The falsetto provides another instrument to the chaotic mix, letting the listener escape with only the lightest touches of sanity.
Top Tracks: The Truth About Heaven, The End of A Fraud
Armor For Sleep â€“ What To Do When Youâ€™re Dead / 2005 Equal Vision / 11 Tracks / http://www.armorforsleep.com / http://www.equalvision.com / Reviewed 02 March 2005