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Anthems: a “fun” album to listen to

When I started listening to Gallows, I never thought in my life that I would Frank Carter sing in place of yelling. I was wrong. Former guitarist of The Hope Conspiracy Jim Carroll and Former Gallows frontman Frank Carter have teamed up to create a mediocre rock band that has very catchy choruses and too many guitar riffs that sound like The Darkness.

Despite sounding a lot like The Darkness minus high-pitched vocals that are hard to understand, Anthems is a solid effort from the group. Beginning on a soft start with “She (Has the Devil Running Through Me)” Anthems does not impress right away. The first song should have been “Bury My Bones” (which is subsequently the second song on the album) with a riff that sounds exactly like “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” by The Darkness.

Move forward to “Handsome Devil’s Club,” where Carroll puts an interesting lead over a rhythm section that hasn’t done much for the song.

“The Hits” is a song that sounds most like something that Carroll would have written with The Hope Conspiracy. Unfortunately, it ends on a bad note. “March of the Pilgrims” sounds like it wants to be a Rush song, but just can’t quite get there. Carter tries to stretch his vocals to distances they can’t quite reach. The music is less exciting than every other song on the album, and it should maybe have been a B-side that the band decided to release later, but it should not have made the album.

Don’t get me wrong. This is mediocre rock and roll at best. There is nothing genre altering or Rock and Roll Hall of Fame about it. But it is a relaxing album that is good to just listen to all the way through without waiting for one song that will blow your mind away. None of these songs will knock you out of your seat, but you will have fun listening to it.

If there is one thing that shines through on this album, it is the lyrics that Carter presents to listeners. They are without a doubt surprisingly simple, as many of his lyrics in Gallows were, but he is able to find the mood of the music and fit it perfectly. Lyrics such as “I’m so sick of singing about hate,” makes a reference that Gallows fans would understand. After years of singing about how much London sucks, Carter has managed to find an outlet where he can be upbeat about life rather than hating it.

Too many people were expecting too much from this album based on reviews since it came out on Monday. If you are expecting a musical masterpiece that combines the sounds of The Hope Conspiracy and Gallows, you are hopelessly wrong.  Both Carroll and Carter have mentioned that they wanted to move away from hardcore and write something a little more rock and roll. If one thing can be said about this album, it is that it has some of the catchiest choruses that I have ever heard and is definitely worth buying.

By Dan Clark

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