Sir Sly - Don't You Worry, Honey
I remember where I was the first time I heard Sir Sly, it was at the 97X BBQ in 2014 in St Pete. I was out doing video for some of the station sponsors when I heard "Gold" being played from the main stage. At the time I had no idea who this band was, but the song had me hooked, I gave up what I was doing at the time and watched their entire set. I knew pretty quickly that this was going to be a band that I would be adding to my collection ASAP. At the time the band only had a few songs to their name.
Fast forward to 2017 and the band has 1 EP, 1 Full album and a bunch of random remixes to their songs under their belt. Their first full album "You Haunt Me" was my album of the year of 2014. It took the songs from their first EP and added a few new songs, which were all just as catchy and interesting to listen to as the songs before them. I HIGHLY recommend giving this album a go for the first time Sir Sly listener.
Landon Jacobs (Vocals) has a very unique voice, and by unique I don't mean it is off putting, in fact it is kind of inviting. Just give their song "Gold" a listen and you'll understand what I'm talking about.
At this point I have put this band on a pedestal. To me they can do no wrong, and this new album was by far the album I was looking forward to the most this year.
That's why it is to my dismay that I say this album will probably go down as my BIGGEST LETDOWN of 2017. I was worried when they released their first single off the album, which is also the first song on the album "High" which has an incredibly catchy/groovy beat to it, but a dreadful hook:
"It feels good to be running from the devil
Another breath and I'm up another level
It feels good to be up above the clouds
It feels good for the first time in a long time now"
Don't get me wrong, the rest of the song sounds like a Sir Sly song that I would enjoy, but this hook/chorus whatever you want to call it brings attention to the main flaw of the song, it feels as if it was written by an 8th grader who just smoked weed for the first time.
The next song "Change" doesn't sound like Sir Sly at all, it sounds like they were going for some kind of R&B vibe that just doesn't work. A while back they covered Drake's "Marvin's Room" and it's pretty clear where "Change" pulls inspiration from, the problem is that Sir Sly isn't a band that should be trying to diversify this early in the game. They already have a sound that is unique on it's own, it's a shame that they feel they need to change it up already. (See what I did there?)
"&Run" is the third song on the album, and is just very boring. There is literally nothing special about the song and we can just move on from it.
"Alter" sounds eerily similar to "Change" in that it clearly is trying to sound like a Drake/Childish Gambino rip off. (New Childish Gambino by the way, not the old stuff where he actually rapped)
At the time of writing this review, my favorite song is "Fun". Is it perfect? No, but the song is exactly as it's title suggests, it's fun to drive around and bob your head to.
Moving right along, "Astronaut" falls into the same trap that this whole album uses as a major crutch. WE GET IT you do drugs. It's one thing if you make a subtle reference that you may have been inebriated when writing these songs, but this song is pretty much a love ballad to tripping, which I guess if that's your thing you might enjoy it, but the song itself is also slow, drab and boring.
"2am" is another slower song that won't have you jamming in your car on your way to work. Remember earlier when I said it felt like this lyrics were written by an 8th grader who just smoked weed for the first time? Well "2am" wins the award for putting in cuss words to sound cooler, here is a line that is repeated twice on the song:
"I'm just panicking; I'm losing my own sight now
I'm freaking the fuck out; I'm keeping my head down"
Maybe at this point I'm being nitpicky, but it really feels like the band wanted to be dare I say "Edgy" so bad, that it is a serious turn off.
As I sit here at 12:04AM listening to this album, I am realizing that it is clear this was supposed to be a Hip-Hop/R&B album. I can't really hate on a band for trying to do something different, the issue is that the concept is not executed well at all. Both "Trippin'" and "Headfirst" find themselves easy to be skipped to get to the final track.
And so now we've made it to the end, the final track of the album "Oh Mama". Does it somehow make up for all of the mess that we've had to go through to get to it? The simple answer is No, it doesn't.
It's interesting how the album starts with "High" which for all intents and purposes sounds like a song you would expect to hear from Sir Sly albeit a little half hearted in the lyrics department. But after that it was like the band decided they hated their identity and wanted to go in a completely different direction. This album could go down as being as bad as Jet's second album, oh what's that? You didn't know Jet had a second album? Well they did, and it was horrible, so horrible that nobody even knows it exists. Hopefully this album will do the same and Sir Sly will come back with an album that can get rid of the bad taste that is left in my mouth.
Stand out tracks: "Fun", "High"(Barely)
Skip these songs: Everything else
Recommended if you like: New Childish Gambino, dying dreams, getting scratched by a cat
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