New Years Day are a band that seemed to be at a crossroads. With the release of their last album Malevolence they started to hit a creative peak and the time has come for them to follow it up. Unbreakable is certainly a mixed bag, it definitely takes New Years Day in a new direction, but it seems to be somewhat of a confusing direction at best. This is both the bands heaviest and most pop sounding record simultaneously and the mix of styles puts the record at odds with itself.
There is a sense of defiance in the writing of this album and they have come out swinging particularly on the album opener Come for Me which shows that heavier more antagonistic side of the band it serves as one of the album’s highlights. The first single Skeletons manages to mix the heavier sound with a huge pop orientated hook creating something very accessible but with a harder edge.
My Monsters, Poltergeist and Break my Bones follow the New Years Day formula very well and showcase the growth the band has undergone. It’s in the moments like Missunderstood and Shut Up where the band comes across as derivitive and lacking in ideas, as both songs come across as very laboured and cliched which I’m sure wass unintentional but still it does drag the album down somewhat. Nocturnal is another song where a lot of ideas appear to have been thrown at the wall in an effort to see what sticks and is another disjointed track which doesn’t land as well as perhaps it should have.
Unbreakable isn’t a band album, it’s just one that feels more like an experiment that didn’t quite land rather than the triumph it could have been coming off of the back of Malevolence. It’s possible the band tried to push themselves a little too hard in too many directions this time out, and this is the result.
Unbreakable will find an audience and the band will still continue to grow in popularity, let’s just hope next time that they can smooth over the cracks that have appeared this time out