i think i respectfully disagree. besides the complexity of the drumming, i think its an improvement in every way. bryan especially did an amazing job on war paint. good things is the only song i skip... and i am beginning to like waves better than never feel alone. the lyrics, the chorus ( which i like mostly because of bryans chords) and the bridge are all amazing.
I disagree in that Reach For The Sun had much better hooks by a clear margin.
Yes, War Paint's got better lyrics but I've listened to War Paint more than 7 times over, and only like first two and last two are songs I can get into. The opener had a bit of a weak chorus, my favorite song (Work In Progress) was still gimmicky, and a good amount of the album didn't grab my attention. The instruments weren't too interesting either.