I always thought that Stavesacre was a much harder band than what is found on “How To Live With A Curse”. The style is something that is a blend of Deftones and P.O.D.; Stavesacre open up this album with a radio-friendly track that echoes throughout whatever room individuals are playing the CD in. The guitar work that is present during the opening minutes of the track hides behind the distinct vocals. One could conceivably have a good criticism if they said equalization was in order, but perhaps the band is operating with a little rust.
The band gets into much harder territory with “It’s Beautiful”; the guitar slides back into a subservient role after the vocals kick up. However, the vocals do stick back a little further than was the case with “A Reason To Believe”. The inclusion of a synthesizer during this track keeps individuals into the band; Stavesacre comes out with a single that will work well on Christian and secular radio, as well as working with those fans of solid musicianship. The quick-tempered disposition of the vocals and guitars during this track is another twist that will keep listeners on their feet.
The band seems to get more and more into a groove with each subsequent track; tying their fortunes to punk tempos for “We Say”, Stavesacre sounds more like Billy Talent than any other act here. The vocals are not the distinctive fare of Billy Talent, but are modified to sound like “Resurrection”-era Fear Factory; the match is perfect. In much the same way as when Blink 182 did their “Adam’s Song”, Stavesacre slow down the momentum during “Fear and Love”. The tempo starts out much more slowly than anything previously on the disc, but the tempo is like a snowball; the band gets to a powerful, full sound before the track ends that is comparable to the rest of the disc. The production is not intrusive at all; Stavesacre is able to shine as themselves and any modification of the band’s sound is done by the band themselves. The band may have been branded with the Christian tag for their previous albums, but this album breaks free from any connotations and makes the band into something much more. This is a disc that has something for everyone; “How To Live With A Curse” is an album that needs to be picked up.
Top Tracks: Future History of the Broken-Hearted, We Say