20 years ago, American post-hardcore band Story Of The Year released their debut album “Page Avenue”. The emotional changed album saw Story Of The Year reach all corners of the globe and gain fans of all ages. It was the beginning of the story that has captured hearts and never ended. Now 20 years on, 7 albums and countless world tours. Story Of The Year have once again grabbed our attention with their latest album “Tear Me To Pieces”. With the recognisable fallen man on the cover just like “Page Avenue” but this time around he is on fire, falling into what seems to be the ocean. The striking “Tear Me To Pieces” album cover gets you thinking before you even hear a note, are we about to get emo dramatic vibes that are similar to “Page Avenue”. The answer is yes and no. “Tear Me To Pieces” is a tear my heart apart emo energy which is something I didn’t know I needed until I listened to this album. Even from “Tear Me To Pieces” you can hear how far Story of The Year have come over the last 20 years, personally and musically. It’s a moment in history for the band with this new release. Gaining new fans is a no brainer, ensuring Story Of The Year legacy continues.
“Tear Me To Pieces” opens with the title track with Dan Marsala (vocals) with strumming melody backing of Ryan Phillips (lead Guitarist). Singing the isolated chorus ‘Tear to me pieces and swallow me. Cause I can’t kill all the anxiety..’ Doesn’t that hit you where it hurts. The hurt in Dan’s vocals hits those clean notes with a kiss on the cheek. Now remember those lyrics cause it’s very important as you will find yourself screaming this out loud later.
“Tear Me To Pieces” is a sing-along album that mashes up post-hardcore and current nu-metal trends. So you will find yourself, singing the tracks out load along with Dan or at random points in your day (both are good choices). With almost all track only reaching the 3 min mark it’s a burst of candy that before you know it it’s over. However; it’s a very balanced album. With a mix of short fast tracks and swaying ballads. That all have an uplifting feeling that bubbles inside.
With highlights from the short fast category – “Real Life“, “Dead and Gone“, “Tear Me To Pieces” and “Knives Out“. Dan Marsala’s screams on these tracks are golden. With quick witty drums from Josh Wills and catchy riffs from both Ryan (Guitar) and Adam Russell (Bass). While the emo swaying ballads are sliding in at the right moments. ‘2005’ a joyous reflection ballad and ‘Use Me’ that ends the album are highlights.
Story Of The Year have returned reminding us that we still need them around to tell us the story of the year. With their influential post-hardcore sound making waves, lighting fires in current and new fans. Here’s to the next 20 years with Story Of The Year.