Album Review: Such Gold - 'Misadventures'

13 August 2012 | 11:59 am | Staff Writer
Originally Appeared In

Some ups and downs, but Such Gold don't disappoint.

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In my everyday life, it’s not unusual for me to be wrong about, well, most things; but when it comes to Such Gold’s 'Misadventures', I’m fairly certain the band’s debut full length will be a fan-pleaser. Such Gold have gained a loyal following since their 2009 inception, through relentless touring and the release of their Stand Tall and Pedestals EPs. So, the build-up surrounding their latest offering is no big surprise. Known for their fusion of melodic hardcore and pop punk sensibilities, Such Gold applies the same formula on Misadventures that permeated their earlier material. But, does it really live up to the hype?

Album opener, ‘Two Year Plan’, is immediately attention-grabbing, with Ben Kotin’s vocals piercing through Nate Derby’s grinding guitar intro at just the right moment. The melody-infused track, short and sharp, stands out above the rest. On the flipside, the three-minute ‘Committee Circus’ tends to drag. Frantic and lacking direction in its verses, the song loses some of the momentum initiated by ‘Two Year Plan’. However, it picks up during the chorus, propelled by Devan Bentley’s faultless percussion skills. ‘Storyteller’ follows a rapid minute-and-a-half pop punk/hardcore amalgam that hits all the right spots.

Clustered in the middle of Misadventures, ‘Keyhole M.O’, ‘Another Day’ and ‘Survival of the Fondest’ exhibit the individual talents of the band – Derby’s guitar playing, Kotin’s vocal range and Bentley’s stellar drumming in particular – but are largely forgettable otherwise.

Kotin once again delivers a strong vocal performance on ‘Tell Yourself’, recurrently belting out, "You’re only what you tell yourself you are, and lying to yourself can only get you so far". True to form, Such Gold artfully chop and change between their chosen genres on heavy-hitting ‘Higher Places’.

Locked Out of the Magic Theater’ is an additional Misadventures highlight, due to the exhilarating tag-team vocals of Kotin and guitarist/singer Skylar Sarkis. "Can you meet me in the middle? Can you meet me in the in-between?", the two repeat, with well-timed interjections and increased force as the song builds. ‘You Are Your Greatest Threat (The Doctor Will Serve You Now)’ closes the record on a more controlled note, with glistening guitars bookending the song, while Kotin further exposes the varying shades of his vocal abilities.

Although Such Gold’s debut doesn’t entirely live up to its hype, it comes relatively close. The band’s songwriting on Misadventures is both aggressive and uplifting, sustaining a feeling of positivity. As a whole, the album overflows with energy, and fans of Such Gold won’t be disappointed by their first full length release.

1. Two Year Plan
2. Committee Circus
3. Storyteller
4. Keyhole M.O.
5. Another Day
6. Survival of the Fondest
7. Tell Yourself
8. Higher Places
9. Understand and Forget
10. Locked Out of the Magic Theater
11. You Are Your Greatest Threat (The Doctor Will Serve You Now)