I don't understand why pop-punk kids put up with this band anymore. Skip School, Start Fights was streaky on a good day....on a bad day, it was good awful. Invicta is probably three times worse. It's a bad record. That's all I can say about it - it's bad. I can't make it through my fourth listen; I would rather listen to my entire top 50 in 2011 than this, the first big release of 2012. In fact, there are quite a few things I'd rather do than give Invicta another listen. I'd rather listen to the new Four Year Strong record a dozen times. I'd rather try to like Every Avenue again.
Hit the Lights isn't a bad band, I'm just not sure they remember how to make a good record. The vocals are the main issue, but they aren't the only bad part. What is going on with the guitars here? Nothing is crunchy. Nothing is edgy. It's all fucking BORING. Not only is it all typical, but it's all Albert Pujols expecting your next fastball. Invicta is simply boring.
Actually, no. I can't dismiss it as just boring. Have you ever eaten a Cinnabon??? Is there ever a reason to eat a Cinnabon? Let's see...I'm at the airport....I'm about to embark on a five-hour flight to Los Angeles....how about a pound of cinnamon-flavored cake? NO. How about, I'm at the mall...just bought a new Ed Hardy t-shirt...how about 1,000 grams of sugar? NO. (everyone listen to Jim Gaffigan's standup about food, where those jokes were lifted from.)
I'd rather eat 12 Cinnabons and face those consequences than give another listen to Invicta. It isn't a guilty pleasure. It's just a bad. record. It's bad. There are 0 (0.000) songs that I will come back to. This is how I know it's bad - on Skip School, Stars Fights, I played tracks 2, 3, 4, and 6 on repeat at some point. I don't know the names of those tracks - I just remember having a physical CD of that album in my car and playing those OVER AND OVER again. Not only are tracks 2, 3, 4, and 6 from SS, SF better than ALL of Invicta put together, but it's not even close. Did this band change guitarists and drummer? Did all of these band members turn back the clock to 2005 and try to write a record for the middle school version of me?
I encourage you to listen to Invicta. I encourage you to BUY Invicta, because I know that Hit the Lights are good guys and they deserve to keep playing music because they're good guys. But I want you to make your own opinion of Invicta, too. I'm sure plenty of people will like this album; I just won't understand why. It's too sugary. It's too tuned. It's too perfect-sounding. I like the punk side of pop-punk....and not only is there no punk here, there's barely even any pop-rock. It's just boring pop songs on repeat for 37:38, and there aren't any lyrics that make me want to return to the bad music. Invicta won't get any more plays from me. It hasn't been imported into my iTunes yet, and it won't ever be. I'll file the CD away in a bookcase. I want everyone to buy this album, listen to it and form their opinion because I'm interested in the compare and contrast - I just think this is the worst album Hit the Lights could have possibly written. Saying that I was anticipating this release is now embarrassing to me. I don't just long for the This Is A Stickup... days, I straight-up think this band should have changed their name before writing either of the albums that came after.