Album Review: Say Anything

Category:  The Arts
Wednesday, February 10th, 2016 at 9:28 PM

Say Anything surprise-released the follow-up to their summer 2014 release "Hebrews" at midnight on Feb. 4. Conceptually, "I Don't Think It Is" may be better suited as a musical score than a full-length album from a band that's been in the game for 15 years. With that being said, Say Anything's seventh studio album is chaotic and driven by 43 minutes of Max Bemis screaming at you.

The confusing and unsettling opening track Give A Damn is a musical middle finger to critics from Bemis himself. "We don t give a damn what they say" rings true through the entire song. It's a mess and Bemis clearly couldn't care less, a theme that seems to carry on to every single track on the album.

"17 Coked Up Speeding" mixes Bemis's rough vocals with what sounds like 1950s rock- inspired melodies. "Princess" is almost tolerable, but gives us a reunion of Christian Holden and Zack Shaw, both who once sang in The Hotelier. If there's one solid track on the album, "#Blessed" is it. Seeming to be an ode to loved ones as Bemis sings a catchy chorus of "I'll burn out with you" over chaotically mixed melodies and percussion. "#Blessed" serves as the glue that holds the project together and keeps it from being a complete disaster. When the final track "Varicose Visage" begins, anyone who has made it that far into the album is greeted with a sense of relief that the album is almost over.

The most impressive part of the album comes in the form of the number of collaborations. Darren King (Mutemath), Paul Hinojos (At The Drive-In), Christian Holden (The Hotelier), Michelle Zauner (Little Big League), Zack Shaw (Back wards Dancer), Dylan Mathieson (Tiny Moving Parts), Bemis ’ s wife Sherri Dupree with her sisters Stacy and Christie and producer Will Yip have a part in the album alon gside the return of former Say Anything bassist Alex Kent. The album was released via YouTube stream through Alternative Press and will be available for purchase Feb. 5.

Kimberly Firestine is the Senior Staff Writer for The Spectator.  

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