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Story So Far, The - Under Soil and Dirt Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 9.5
Musicianship 9
Lyrics 9.75
Production 9
Creativity 8.25
Lasting Value 10
Reviewer Tilt 10
Final Verdict: 94%
Member Ratings
Vocals 9.78
Musicianship 9.47
Lyrics 9.69
Production 9.28
Creativity 8.89
Lasting Value 9.69
Reviewer Tilt 9.78
Average: 95%
Inside AP.net

Story So Far, The - Under Soil and Dirt

Reviewed by: Corey Hoffy (07/05/11)
The Story So Far - Under Soil and Dirt
Record label: Pure Noise Records
Release Date: June 21, 2011


The Wonder Years may have the feel-good portion of pop punk covered this year with their incredible Suburbia I’ve Given You All And Now I’m Nothing, but sometimes life isn’t as cheery as one would hope it to be. Summer is filled with partying, finding new love and inevitably for some, heartache. For some, summer is a time to cope with that heartache and find albums to relate to their personal burdens. The Story So Far’s infectious Under Soil and Dirt will be that album. It will be the album that makes seeing happy couples around you a little more bearable. It’s one you come back to years down the road, when you realize that life wasn’t as unlivable as you naively thought, and find that it still holds relevance in your life.

With the commonly done break-up theme at their disposal, The Story So Far could have easily produced an album filled with clichés, fake emotion and trite angry teenager music. Instead, the result is an album of true emotional relevance and some pretty damn good music to go along with it. “Roam” starts the heartache off with a bang; vocalist Parker Cannon claims, “You have no idea how unproductive it is/To fall in and out of you as often as I do” and “Never again will I let someone in.” “Quicksand” reminds us that sometimes it’s better to let someone go before we sink into nothing and/or snap completely. “I’m trying hard/Real hard/Everyday not to lose my temper.”

“High Regard” really displays the pissed off side of the band with a “fuck it” approach to songwriting (“Fuck an apology/I’m not sorry for anything/I’ve been holding back my apathy for far too long”). These may not be the most philosophical or thought-inducing lyrics, but I found myself emotionally invested in every line. “High Regard” is a major highlight. For anyone doubting the appeal of the band at this point, I present to you “Mt. Diablo,” the best song present on the record. It has such a driving sound filled with gang vocals and a youthful sense of anger. The lyrics are the most heart-on-sleeve the band has ever been. There are emotionally charged lines like “Do you look yourself straight in the eyes/And think about who you let between your thighs?” and “Cut the shit be real with me/You’re the only one I ever fucking judge.”

Under Soil and Dirt is not an album that thrives to be a great guitar album or great vocal album. It simply strives to express emotion. The album would have been good if it simply achieved this goal. The album is great because it goes beyond limiting themes to create a standard for all future heartbreak pop punk bands to live up to.

If you’re still not sold on this album, I simply say that you won’t be. This is an album that will maintain a special place in my music collection for years because it’s a personal album. What I’ve often found true about personal albums is that some will simply not “get it.” To this, I say don’t try and get it. Don’t make it into something complex. Simply move on to something you find enjoyable, because you’ll be all the happier for it. I find this album to be a near-perfect masterpiece - an album that will stand the test of time (at least in my music collection) and remind me of a time when life seemed naively unbearable and undeniably exciting all at once.

Recommended If You Like: I really have nothing for this. You tell me what this sounds like to you

Solid Tracks: Every single song on here, but the best track: Mt. Diablo

myspace.com/thestorysofarca
Buy it on iTunes
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 37
06:57 AM on 07/10/11
#2
ElScorchBro
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Great review, I totally agree with your most of opinions (except High Regard is my personal favorite). The album is one of the most emotionally charged I've heard in a while. Honestly, this band came out of nowhere in the last year to release what I think is my AOTY so far
07:59 AM on 07/10/11
#3
incognitojones
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This record really surprised, great release.
09:01 AM on 07/10/11
#4
Viva Sonata
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This is an incredible album. My AOTY so far.

I know where you've been, I knew what it meant. Never again will I let someone in.
09:41 AM on 07/10/11
#5
Yogey
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This record really surprised, great release.
Me too
My favorite pop punk album of the year probably
09:42 AM on 07/10/11
#6
incognitojones
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Me too
My favorite pop punk album of the year probably
My third if the new Fireworks and Spraynard ones count.
10:16 AM on 07/10/11
#7
JeffyDomer
Things are the same.
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One of the albums of the year for me. Comparable to Mutiny! for a great debut record.

Edit: should probably spell mutiny right.
10:21 AM on 07/10/11
#8
chutterhanban
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This is an incredible album. My AOTY so far.

I know where you've been, I knew what it meant. Never again will I let someone in.
I know where you've been / you're ruining men / never again will I let someone in

also. best album in the genre for the year. personally the closest thing to this that i've ever loved is like NFG sticks and stones or something--which is nothing like it. there's just something about this album, that if it gets you, it just keeps getting you.

i've bought probably 15 or 20 records this month (getting obsessed with vinyl) and i find myself coming back to this one more than anything. it's consistently trumping suburbia, bon iver s/t, saotw, killing time, ta - parting the sea..., blink s/t, etc. it's nuts. the only thing that is giving it a run so far is balance and composure - separation.
11:07 AM on 07/10/11
#9
Viva Sonata
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I know where you've been / you're ruining men / never again will I let someone in

also. best album in the genre for the year. personally the closest thing to this that i've ever loved is like NFG sticks and stones or something--which is nothing like it. there's just something about this album, that if it gets you, it just keeps getting you.

i've bought probably 15 or 20 records this month (getting obsessed with vinyl) and i find myself coming back to this one more than anything. it's consistently trumping suburbia, bon iver s/t, saotw, killing time, ta - parting the sea..., blink s/t, etc. it's nuts. the only thing that is giving it a run so far is balance and composure - separation.
Oh, shit! Sorry, man. I knew that didn't sound right. xD
11:29 AM on 07/10/11
MALKiiN
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this record has more replay value to me than suburbia/gospel and any other pop punk record that has come out this year. 3 weeks of listening out and im not one bit tired of it so far. they are becoming my favorite new pop punk band
11:37 AM on 07/10/11
owiseone35
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One of the albums of the year for me. Comparable to Mutinty! for a great debut record.
Completely agree with this comment. This album kills, its just there is so much passion and energy in this release. Great release from a band that will hopefully get big.
11:44 AM on 07/10/11
hello299
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Too much lyric quoting in the review. Middle two paragraphs told me everything informative about the album. Could have cut out the rest and it would have made it more concise and to the point.
12:04 PM on 07/10/11
Corey Hoffy
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Too much lyric quoting in the review. Middle two paragraphs told me everything informative about the album. Could have cut out the rest and it would have made it more concise and to the point.
Well the album is a lyrical album. I quoted the lyrics that impressed me the most or stuck with me. As I said, this is a personal album, so I made the review as personal as possible.
12:23 PM on 07/10/11
Avalanche1
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Such an amazing album and band.
12:48 PM on 07/10/11
youngz
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Completely agree with everything you said.
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