Best of 2016 Playlist

January 12, 2017

You Me at Six - "Night People" Album Review

The title track will have you thinking this album is going to be dirty, gritty, and full of soul. The album instead delivers some surprisingly mellowed out tracks. You Me at Six shift gears for this record, trying to shake things up and keep fans interested. Let's see how well they did...

To purchase the album on iTunes please click this (link).

It's obvious at this point You Me at Six aren't interested in going back to the iconic sound they crafted for their debut "Take Off Your Colours". Now firmly routed in modern Brit-pop rock, the band are writing mainstream worthy hit after hit. "Night People" shows how far they've come since the days of their angsty pop punk, alt. rock. YMAS have become a more mature pop rock outlet. The UK's answer to Fall Out Boy in many ways. But like Fall Out Boy, YMAS have lost what made them unique and lovable in the first place. 

Overtime, this group have crafted a signature alt. rock, pop stadium sound that is instantly recognizable. It fills concert venues, and resonates with each listener. But on this record, the band deviate from their formula and try something new. And unfortunately it doesn't work. This entire record has a very 70s, 80s vibe that doesn't suit this Brit-rock band. This style is more suited to a Danny Worsnop side project or solo album. 

All these lyrical themes are so tried and tired, but could have been made special. Unfortunately the band doesn't put any sort of interesting spin to make them standout in the crowd. But then again, that could be a to describe the band's career. "Make Your Move" relies on frontman Josh Franceschi doing a bad Kurt Cobain impression where he gargles into the microphone during much of the chorus and bridge. A little too much crunch on the guitar, and some bizarre production choices kill what could have been show stealing tracks.

Lyrically the album is weak, producing some of the most uninteresting lines we've heard. From "Can't Hold Back", where Franceschi whines about not wanting to, and not being able to hold back, to "Swear" where Franceschi swears he won't do this or do that, to "Spell It Out" which the most stereotypically "emo" song from the band to date. That particular track is little more than a slow, methodic song where Franceschi croons about being sad and struggling to win a fight. The guitar riff that comes in at the end comes in all too late to save this track. 

"Heavy Soul" doesn't seem like a YMAS song at all. Perhaps it's the influence of Tennessee, which is where the band recorded the album, but this feels like something that should have come out of an aspiring country rock band. It's devoid of energy and Franceschi's usually edge. Instead of pursuing that bigger, bolder arena style rock they've taken their music into the bars of Nashville. Seriously, this track is like something ripped straight from a 70s radio station, and not in a good way.

The one solid standout of the record is "Brand New", which lives up to its name. A more indie oriented rock song that is executed flawlessly. From Franceschi's sweet vocals, to the anthemic chorus and driving guitar. The mellower verses have a steady drum and bass backing, and gentle lead guitars. A winning track, appropriate for a montage in an indie movie. 


You know how "The Amazing Spider Man 2" had you thinking that the Rhino was going to be a much more important villain, and not some ten minute cameo from Paul Giamatti? And then you find out this movie made all the same mistakes the previous franchise made (too many villains). "Night People" is the musical equivalent. A highly misleading preview, when in reality this record is a weak attempt at hard rock meets You Me at Six style pop-rock. The band dropped the ball on this one, and it's sad because every previous record has shown the band had huge crossover potential like the aforementioned Fall Out Boy.  

Tracks to listen to

The title track is by far the best, but also listen to "Swear" and "Brand New". 

Rating - 6/10