Pierce the Veil - Collide With the Sky
Record Label: Fearless
Release Date: July 17, 2012
A couple weeks ago I received the ability to listen to Collide With the Sky, the new Pierce the Veil album that has stirred the scene enough between a couple surfaced songs and a rather visible cover art controversy. I’ll lay this out right now – while their was certainly an affinity inside for their debut A Flair for the Dramatic, Selfish Machines is more than likely going to be the band’s opus as far as energy and variety is concerned. That being said, Collide With the Sky does what it can to pick up where Machines left off, dropping us in an instrumental palate of sounds and moods fueled by Vic Fuentes’ gripping croon. And while this album has the peaks to match the might of PTV’s songwriting abilities, the execution here just doesn’t quite live up to the hype this album has quietly been sizzling on for a few months now. Still, Collide With the Sky displays ample musicianship for a band that unfortunately gets lumped too often with peers who can’t quite hang – that fact is still just as evident.
“King For a Day” and “Bulls in the Bronx” paint an interesting picture for this record considering they were the first two tracks to make their way out into the wild as singles. The former still sounds like possibly the most disappointing use of a guest spot in Sleeping with Sirens’ Kellin Quinn as he rushes through lines instead of matching his voice against Vic’s in what could have been a vocal battle royale. Even the smoother lines of the pre-chorus feel off as things meld from frantic to controlled. Jason Butler, that guy from letlive., makes a much better appearance on the mid-tempo lushness of “Tangled in the Great Escape” – a gripping track that channels Butler’s versatility while showing a slow-fast switch in instrumentation with well-placed dynamics.
“Bulls in the Bronx” does the latter though, as instead of misfiring on a golden opportunity, the band takes a little of every ingredient they’ve displayed proficiency at and mix it together for something that is enjoyable without being too heavy lyrically. Uptempo bits mix with a south of the border melodic break to set up a smooth, yet distinctive chorus that again shows PTV’s hooking ability. The faster bits certainly work just as well throughout (“The First Punch”) as drum master Mike Fuentes still slays when the tempo cranks higher. The heavier portions are still hanging around as well, with the crippling rips of “Hell Above” and jagged riffs laced through “Stained Glass Eyes and Colorful Tears” show a variety of entry points to consider in whether or not you might consider Pierce the Veil as one of the more creative bands in the scene when it comes to turning up the heat in terms of riffs.
Not everything is heavy though – far from it. Though "I'm Low on Gas and You Need a Jacket" is strong enough as a very textured, personal churner with a super bright chorus, “Props & Mayhem” sports itself as a mid-tempo pseudo-ballad that while ripe with prime melodies just doesn’t quite have it in itself to not feel out of place. “Hold on Till May” ends the album on a slightly different note with somber guitars and pure croonery from Vic and Oh No Fiasco’s Lindsay Stamey. It is a bit overdone, save for some crisp riffs and busy, but well done pop-rock drumming to savor amongst the complimenting vocals from the duo. This record shows a bit less of a band that often cites Queen as an influence – check “Stained Glass Eyes and Colorful Tears” for a starting point on such musical theatrics – but there’s still plenty to take in amongst the frantic guitar lines and stellar melodic work of this record.
Perhaps a slow burn this time around, Collide With the Sky doesn’t quite garnish the immediate successes of its predecessor. Despite some missteps along the way, this is a record sure to continue Pierce the Veil’s steady ascent to the top of their league. But regardless, this record proves Pierce the Veil are seemingly still one step ahead of everyone else when it comes to concocting energetic slices of post-hardcore and that they won’t be dropping the ball any time soon.
This review is a user submitted review from Jason Gardner. You can see all of Jason Gardner's submitted reviews here.
For me this just doesn't come close to Selfish Machines. For me, Selfish Machines sums up a time, a place, a relationship, hell even a video game I played a lot at the time (LA Noire). This album is good, but I feel Selfish Machines was catchier and a little less reliant on being "heavy".
like the album, still all very new to me
the first few songs are really good except king for a day. "i'm low on gas..." is really good too.
nowhere near as good as their first 2 albums. gonna take some getting used to
i do love this record, but i don't think it's quite as good as selfish machines. this one takes a bit of a different direction which is still good, but i tend to like the less heavy songs on the album most for some reason, "tangled in the great escape" its an incredible song and i really like "i'm low on gas..." i love the heavy aspect of their band, but i feel like it wasn't executed quite as well for this album. still a great record though and i think it will be holding my attention for a while