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Lead Sails Paper Anchor

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Album Review

Atreyu's Lead Sails Paper Anchor is a decent album. The problem? It would be a much more consistent and stronger one if producer John Feldmann had settled on one sound — slick or raw — because it can't be both. (For the record, the rougher moments on the album do give Atreyu more vitality.) It isn't even a case of different songs having different production values, which would have made for a difficult, but ultimately forgivable, listen. Instead, these switches in sound occur multiple times, often in the same song. It's noticeable right from the beginning with opening number "Doomsday." During the verses, guitarists Dan Jacobs and Travis Miguel crunch away while Alex Varkatzas' raspy vocals add texture and grit, but as soon as the chorus hits, the sound abruptly becomes slick and restrained. It's not on the part of the musicians, either — it's very obviously a recording effect. It's a trend that is repeated throughout Lead Sails Paper Anchor, reining in Atreyu's hard and heavy sound to the album's detriment. By holding the band back, the album never achieves any sort of critical mass. Fortunately, Lead Sails Paper Anchor isn't a bland effort, and this helps to compensate somewhat, even if some of the songs seem a little out of place. ("Falling Down," which sounds a little too punk-pop for this collection, is a prime example.) "Lose It" is a particularly intriguing number, beginning with layered and distorted guitars before bursting into a brief flurry of heavy riffs. This, in turn, gives way to haunted verses, a rough, aggressive chorus, and an eerie bridge section featuring echoing harmonies and hand claps. "Blow" is another highlight, though for completely different reasons — the big, juicy guitar riffs, a singalong (though hardly family-friendly) chorus, and a healthy dose of cowbell all add up for a rousing, arena-ready showstopper. Both are unencumbered by the restraining effects placed on most of the other pieces, giving a glimpse of what this album could have been. Fans may have to wait for a live album or a concert ticket to hear what Atreyu are really capable of doing with this material.

Customer Reviews

Bands have to grow up sometimes guys...

I love metal and screaming vox about as much as one man can. But we have to admit the scene is starting to get crowded with hundereds bands that sound EXACTLY the same.. scream your verses, big singing chorus, break down riff, repeat... its nasty, nasty old. Atreyu is taking the Avenged Sevenfold path and trying to bust out of the pack of metal core clones and I commend them for it. As an artist you can not be expected to pump out the same album over and over, you have to grow. Also, as an artist, the underground scene will not pay your bills for very long (if at all) and you can not hate on them for trying to get a little mainstream success.... Good for them... and there is a better product because of it...

Give it A chance

You gotta give Atreyu a break. They went from making great hardcore music to great metal music. Dont call this mainstream, Panic at the disco and fergie are mainstream, this is not. This album is actually really good in the eyes of most people, but if you dont like it, dont ruin it for everyone else, just go listen to their old album. Some Great Tracks=Doomsday, Becoming the Bull, When two are One, cant happen here. All fans of Atreyu and metal should give it a chance, and not just a '30 second itunes clip' chance

everyone needs to chillout

I have absolutely loved Atreyu since the beginning. I loved the nonstop screaming in the curse and even in a death grip on yesterday. I picked up this cd a little sketchy about it because of what i had heard. But when I listened to it, I loved it, it isnt your typical atreyu album, but from the first to the last song, it sounds like them, they did a wonderful job on this album, although my favorite song by them is still untitled finale, When Two Are One is a close favorite now. This is definately worth the 9.99, not a doubt in my mind, new atreyu fans AND OLD ONES need to pick up this record, youll love it, i can guarantee you. 5 stars for sure


Formed: 1998 in Orange County, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Coming out of Southern California during the rap-metal explosion around the turn of the century, Atreyu crafted a sound much closer to Agnostic Front or Hatebreed. The metalcore quintet was formed by Brandon Saller (drums/vocals), Dan Jacobs (guitar), Chris Thomson (bass), Travis Miguel (guitar), and Alex Varkatzas (vocals). Their warped, detuned guitars were matched by pounding drums and acidic vocals, which gave the material an edge otherwise absent from their sludge metal. Atreyu released various...
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