Title Fight - Shed
Record Label: SideOneDummy Records
Released Date: May 3, 2011
Kingston, Pennsylvania's Title Fight have matured their sound a bit for their newest (and first official full-length) release, Shed. One of the first things you'll notice about this CD, compared to other releases, is that it has a lot less feel-good lead guitar parts; it’s more toned down in a melancholy sense than their previous work. That being said, some fans may be turned off that this album isn't just another exact release of The Last Thing You Forget (except with a new album title and song names). Needless to say, they still don't venture far from their original hardcore/pop-punk formula that all fans know and love. The album artwork for Shed also uses the same unique artistic style that The Last Thing You Forget did, and it almost reminds me of a 90s-era Nickelodeon cartoon.
The vocals on Shed stand out immediately. They showcase different, aged and more mature type of vocals when compared to other releases. Much like The Last Thing You Forget , Ned Russin (bass) and Jamie Rhoden (guitar) still do all of the singing, and it’s still pretty 50/50 for vocal duties. The subject matter of the lyrics have also changed and matured quite a bit. One example would be "27,” a song about coping with death and accepting the reality of it. Another is the album-titled track "Shed," where Russin once said (at a show in Worcester) that it’s about all the bands that jumped on the hardcore music bandwagon after it became popular in order to make money and plan on leaving as soon as the hype for it dies. Some of the lyrics in "Shed" include: "You're cold like the blood that runs through your veins/I've been told/There's a black spot next to your name/You can't seem to erase/Shed your skin, change your face/Find a better body to fit in."
Compared to The Last Thing You Forget, Shed has cleaner guitar parts and slow-tempo songs that one might not be accustomed to hearing from Title Fight. One example is "Safe in your Skin," which is a completely clean, almost post-rock sounding, song that features soft singing and flows right into the next track. One thing I love about Shed is that although only being a short-lived 27-minute record, the songs are more memorable than other albums double or triple that time length. One standout song from Shed, entitled "Stab," comes right from the veins of Title Fight’s old style during their Kingston EP days. Though hard to choose, other standouts are "Flood of '72," "Your Screen Door," "27," "Crescent-Shape Depression" and "Shed."