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The Constant

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Editors’ Notes

The Constant finds S.O.T.Y. settled into their post-hardcore sound, yet daring to take risks by lacing some of their punkish power-pop with heavy metal trimmings. “The Children Sing” opens with actual children singing an eerie refrain before grungy guitars come hammering down. The kids also pipe in for the choruses here, inadvertently recalling the 1987 hit “Cry Little Sister” from Gerard McMann’s contribution to the soundtrack for The Lost Boys. “The Ghost of You and I” unleashes mammoth-sized rawk riffs that interestingly contrast the kind of delayed staccato strumming that have become synonymous with The Edge from U2. Frontman Dan Marsala howls himself hoarse, musing about a relationship gone horribly wrong while Josh Wills brutally assaults his drum kit. “I’m Alive” takes a detour with an anthemic power ballad that’s as catchy as it is formulaic. “To the Burial” returns the band to their hardcore roots with relentlessly pummeling beats that sound influenced by early Discharge albums, and while “Won Threw Ate” attempts the same approach, it contains a more commercially accessible melody.

Customer Reviews

What we have here is what should have been the follow-up to Page Avenue...

Most fans (and by "fans" I mean those who recently jumped on the bandwagon with the introduction of In the Wake of Determination) will probably hate what I have to say about this album. First of all, Page Avenue was an amazing debut, and it's too bad that Story of the Year wasn't given more credit for what they brought to the table. In the Wake of Determination, alternatively, had them scavenging to build a bigger fanbase as they tried to experiment with a harder, metal sort of sound. I think they did pick up a lot more fans this way; but that album dissappointed me. It wasn't Story of the Year singing anymore. Then came Black Swan. In that album they incorporated both the driving power of In the Wake of Determination with the "softer" sounds of Page Avenue, and I ended up liking the album, on the whole, a lot more than its predecessor. Now Story of the Year has come out with a brand new album, The Constant, and I must say, it's simply amazing. In this album Story of the Year seems to cling to their old Page Avenue sounds, but at the same time they bring in a few unique twists and turns, so that we're not just listening to a reworked version of before. On the whole, though, despite the fact that it sounds more like the good old SOTY, The Constant, in actuality, is an album that could stand fully on its own as a new sound from the band we know and love. In short, if you liked Page Avenue and Black Swan, you'll love this album. If you hated Page Avenue but loved In the Wake of Determination, this isn't for you (save a few songs). This is what should have been the follow-up to their debut album. THIS album does them justice.

Definitly Story of the Year

This has been done before. By Story of the Year and a bunch of other bands. The album may lack originality, but there is no doubt that SOTY gives it their signature flair. Each song has something to remember it by, but at first, they seem to mush together. They have the right amount of 'screamo' to match their other albums.

The Children Sing- 9/10 The kids singing has been done before, but it still gives it an epic flair to start with
The Ghost of You and I- 8/10 I liked the clean, definable sound on this one; the other songs get a bit messy
I'm Alive- 8/10 Unoriginal, but it is still the lyrics of SOTY, and worth listening to a few times
To the Burial- 7/10 Great beginning, but the drums/guitar seems a little messy to me. Screaming is good on here.
Dream is Over- 8/10 This is the song on this album that you tap your foot to. Bordering on unoriginal, but certainly saved by the guitar.
Remember a Time- 7/10 Probably not the one you will remember from this album, but adds to the cheesily inspirational feel of this album
Holding onto You- 6/10 The piano was pretty, and I guess every band needs a sad, overdone love song, but SOTY gives it enough rock not to gag.
Won Threw Ate- 8/10 This stands out on the album. More screaming, and the drum distracts from it sometimes, but it is a break from the mellow songs that are given a hard rock base to them.
Ten Years Down- 9/10 This is a SOTY song. You can tell. Melodic,meaningful lyrics, flowing instruments, and a cool guitar.
Time Goes On- 7/10 I was getting a little tired of the similar opening to the songs, and this song is just one of those that is on here because it matches the others.
Eye for an Eye- 7/10 Funny opening, a bit messy, but manages fluidy. Not the best song to end with, but good nontheless.

It's a good album- deifinitly SOTY. If you like SOTY, you'll like this. If you are iffy on them, you might not because of the lack of new thoughts and originality.

Compared to the past

Page Avenue = the best
The rest of the albums = not so much.

Can't get more simple than that.

Biography

Formed: 1995 in St. Louis, MO

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Story of the Year took root in the late '90s under a different name, Big Blue Monkey, in St. Louis, MO. At the time of its inception, the band's sound was much heavier (similar to the Deftones), and the lineup that would eventually become Story of the Year was not yet in place. Big Blue Monkey played frequent shows in the St. Louis area, issued several EPs, and endured the lineup fluctuations typical to any struggling combo. Creative and persistent self-promotion soon caught the ear of producer John...
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