Page Avenue repetitive, but worth a second listen


by Matt Bower

Story of the Year is a five-piece band that hails from St.Louis, Mo. Their Maverick Records debut release Page Avenue hitstore shelves just over a year ago and they have been touring insupport of it ever since.

Story of the Year’s sound can best be described as a combinationof screamo and punk rock. Dan Marsala, lead vocalist, bears anuncanny resemblance to The Used lead singer, Bert McCracken.Marsala blends piercing screams with clean melodies, often leavingthe listener with very little reaction time as he transitionsbetween the two.

There are two guitarists in the band, Ryan Phillips and PhillipSneed. Sneed also provides backing vocals. There aren’t really anysolos on this record, but Phillips and Sneed incorporate creative,colorful guitar sections that don’t need a vocal solo to createinterest. Adam Russell handles bass duties and Josh Wills roundsout the rhythm section on drums.

On first listen, Page Avenue may sound repetitive because manyof the songs are similar, but if the album is given a secondchance, listeners will discover more beneath the surface.

The CD starts off with a bang leading with “And the Hero WillDrown” and follows up with the popular singles “Until the Day IDie” and “Anthem of Our Dying Day” respectively. Page Avenue seemsto mellow down the further you go, but never loses the intenseenergy the band possesses.

Standout tracks include “And the Hero Will Drown,” “Until theDay I Die,” “Anthem of Our Dying Day,” and “Burning Years”.


Lostprophets blended sound makes for goodalbum

Lostprophets incorporate many elements of music to craft itsinfectious, melody-driven songs.

The band is made up of six members, all native Welshmen, andeach member brings something special to the table.

Lead vocalist Ian Watkins puts a lot of power and emotion intohis delivery, but he hasn’t always been the vocalist.

Watkins began the band as the drummer but moved to vocals whenMike Chiplin was recruited on the skins. Guitarist Lee Glaze joinedthe band when Chiplin did.

Bassist Stuart Richardson was recruited after the band releasedits debut “The Fake Sound of Progress,” along with Jamie Oliver onturntables. Guitarist Mike Lewis completes the lineup and is one ofthe few original members.

Lostprophets’ sound is a blend of emo, punk, metal, and a bit oftechno.

There’s a lot of creativity and variety within the group’s songsand it does a good job of mixing fast-paced, hard rockers andslower piano-driven songs. Lostprophets isn’t afraid to experimentwith their sound. They use a live Welsh orchestral strings sectionon some songs such as the title track, “Start Something,” as wellas “A Million Miles Away.”

Other standout tracks include “Last Train Home,” “Make a Move,””Burn, Burn,” and the slower “Hello Again.”