By Marvin Dotiyal, Staff Writer
[Triple Crown; 2017]
Key Tracks: “No Halo,” “A Portrait Of,” “Second Letter From St. Julien”
Even if Brand New breaks up in 2018, all hope is not lost for the future of emo music. Sorority Noise is your best bet if you want to relive and experience a fresh new Deja Entendu or The Devil & God Are Raging Inside Me. Sorority Noise’s Forgettable focused more on a “sad boy” pop-punk sound, while their follow-up Joy, Departed featured indie-rock influences. In their latest, You’re Not As ____ As You Think, they bring Mike Sapone (producer of Brand New and Taking Back Sunday) in the studio, resurrecting the distinct sound of mid-2000s emo.
This album frequently pulls you in and out of moments reminiscent of Brand New’s discography, starting from “No Halo,” the opening track. The song starts with a melancholy guitar riff and verse, which slowly builds up to a heartfelt chorus about losing a close friend: “So I didn’t show up to your funeral, but I showed up to your house / And I swore I saw you in there, but I was looking at myself.”
“A Portrait Of” is a very honest and heartfelt song about anxiety and depression. Although this song doesn’t sound as sad it should, it takes listeners on a rollercoaster of emotions, especially at the end when singer Cameron Boucher screams a very personal monologue of his teen angst. The reverb-heavy guitars create a hazy texture, a reflection on how Boucher felt lost in life. Not all songs on the album are necessarily sad and emotional. Sorority Noise keeps the balance by adding happier such as “Where Are You?,” “A Better Sun” and “Disappeared.”
The songs “First Letter From St. Sean” and “Second Letter From St. Julien” are about losing friends and doubting God in response. “Second Letter From St. Julien” summarizes Boucher’s feelings toward his friends’ deaths and religion. The song starts out quiet, but it gradually builds up to the climax, with the song ending in an emotional outburst.
The album finishes up with a short calming acoustic tune, “New Room.” Again, this track feels parallel to Brand New’s “Soco Amaretto Lime,” which is also a raw, acoustic song that ends Your Favorite Weapon. The raw production quality and Boucher’s voice work in synergy, creating a nostalgic feel of home and belonging. Much like the majority of the lyrics in the album, they are simple yet effective. There’s nothing super fancy, but Sorority Noise’s lyrics shine with simplicity.
You’re Not As ____ As You Think is without a doubt a modern emo gem. It’s definitely something that’s hard to come across these days. Sorority Noise has shown progression in this record while bringing back the mid-2000s emo sound many people are nostalgic over.