‘Bad Vibrations’, released on September 2, 2016, is the hardcore album A Day to Remember fans have been waiting for since Homesick was released in 2009. Though the band tends to fluctuate between their sound somewhere between pop punk and metalcore, this album is decidedly on the heavier side of things.
The lead track and single ‘Bad Vibrations’ immediately reintroduced the band’s heavier style and set the tone for the rest of the album. With lead singer Jeremy McKinnon screaming ‘All around me, all consuming’ as deep guitar riffs seem to swirl around him, the listener is forced to pay attention to the bad vibrations that McKinnon himself can’t escape.
This heavy hitter just sets the stage for the rest of the album. With tracks like ‘Bullfight’, ‘Naivety’, and ‘Exposed’ ADTR makes it clear, they’re not messing around. ‘Naivety’ reeks of just that. It’s hardcore but at the same time dips into the bands pop punk roots, while also including that ambient background noise in the beginning that ADTR is famous for featuring on their albums. It’s a solidly nostalgic example of their older writing.
‘Exposed’ is the old school metalcore anthem I didn’t know I needed until the first heavy riff began to play in perfect syncopation with my heart. When a quiet guitar leads into McKinnon shrieking, ‘Like a shark that’s combing the surface, we got a taste for blood’, and then the quickest, heaviest breakdown ADTR has ever written, you know you’ve found a winner.
The only problem with the album is the last two tracks. They are the weakest on the album and are boring compared to the rest of it. They do not carry the same type of sound and seem disjointed, as if they were just tacked on at the end.
Despite that, this is a solidly put together album with a little something for every type of hardcore fan out there. If you like heavier styles of pop punk, or simply find yourself in the mood for something a little different, give this album a listen!
Best Tracks: Bad Vibrations, Exposed