Safe Haven - Setting Up and Tearing Down
Record Label: None
Release Date: June 27, 2007
The genre of pop-punk is a sinking ship, yet for some reason bands keep jumping on board. They look at the success of bands like Fall Out Boy or Boys Like Girls and figure out that it's not too hard to play, so that's the direction they ought to go. Unfortunately, they don't see the other hundreds of bands trying to do the exact same thing. Sure, there are hooks, sure it's catchy, and it's an energy-infused EP, but none of this sets Safe Haven apart from the rest.
Setting Up and Tearing Down is an album that will get my head bopping while listening and if I hear it, you can bet your ass I'll be singing along. Only problem is that if I'm not listening to it, I don't remember a damn thing about it; there is nothing about it that burns it into my memory.
Vocally, this album is decent. At times, the vocals draw the listener in, but most times, they are very bland and don't do much for the listener. It's pretty clear that Gil Sandoval could sing very well if he really wanted to, but for some reason he doesn't utilize his talent for most of the album. The lyrics on this album are not only one of the lower points, but probably the most generic thing about the album. Most of them sound like they could have been stolen right out of Pete Wentz's notebook, while others are sappier than even Mr. Wentz could pen. The line that comes to mind is "Life sucks / but it's something we all have to go through," which is just cringe worthy.
Musically, they seem to be extremely below-average. The majority of the songs here have the same two or three chords playing the entire time at the same tempo. The way the do this makes almost all of the songs sound identical to one another. The drums also fail to present anything that I haven't heard before, as most of the drum parts are beats that have been used in countless other songs.
I honestly hate writing reviews like this; I wish that all of the newer bands presented something different and exciting, as opposed to the same regurgitated sound over and over. However, most of what comes out falls into the latter category and that's what I have to work with. I can only pray that bands start to experiment with their music a little more, allowing them to have a much more promising future.