Tag Archives: Tyler Carter

Issues – Issues

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When Issues released their debut EP in late 2012, I was severely impressed by it and I was amply stoked when they announced that they would be recording a full-length in 2013. At the same time I had some minor doubts as to whether they could keep up the high level of the EP…luckily the self-titled album not only lives up to it but, in my opinion, exceeds it by miles. But let’s dive in, shall we?

For those of you who don’t know, the sextet from Atlanta plays very modern post-hardcore with heavy R&B influences in the vocal department and some rapped vocals…while it seems weird on paper, it works surprisingly well. Especially since the instrumental parts are quite groove-orientated and yet maintain a great deal of heaviness to them. One gripe that people might have is that the twelve songs are quite over-produced, but to be frank, I couldn’t imagine their thing to work for them without it.

The main factor that differentiates the band from the flock however, is without a doubt that they manage to incorporate pop melodies into their songs, without it sounding incredibly stupid. A good example is the song, Late, which you can find below: in my opinion the song could be played on the radio and, except for the screamed parts, nobody would think about it twice.

Another focal and selling point of these forty-four minutes for me are the dual vocals, which feature on the one hand the amazingly soulful vocals of Tyler Carter and on the other hand the aggressive screams of Michael Bohn, the original Woe, Is Me vocalists. Mostly the clean vocal melodies coupled with the vocal effects in some songs still blow my mind…mainly because I’m not a huge fan of vocal effects in general, but it just works for me in this ensemble. The female guest vocals by Nylo on the song Tears On The Runaway, Pt. 2 are also a nice addition, even though I have to admit that I would have loved a heavier guest vocalist on one of the songs as well.

To sum things up, Issues managed to improve on the one negative aspect of their EP, that being the length, and deliver a solid record where every song, even the DJ interlude, has a right of existence. I can strongly recommend giving the song below a spin and if you like what you hear, visit the band’s Facebook page for more info and buy the album!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTvcW_s0FCo]

Issues – Black Diamonds

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Today’s review will constitute the first part of a comparison of two different records. The reason I’m doing this is because today’s record features several ex-members of the band I’m going to review next week, mainly the two former lead singers. So, let’s start, shall we?

Issues was formed in mid 2012 and quickly decided to release an EP called Black Diamonds in order to show their fans that they’re still alive and full of inspiration. An endeavor that, in my opinion, definitely succeeded.

After an electronic-dubsteppy intro, which they could have left aside, you are treated to the absolutely phenomenal King Of Amarillo: a song that has managed to cause quite a stir in the metalcore community because it’s an open diss of the main member from the singers’ former band. It starts off heavy and switches into a chorus that is dominated by very soulful clean vocals followed by a hip-hop influenced part that, oddly enough, fits perfectly into the ensemble.

The rest of the six songs follows a similar formula but each song has its own recognition value, which is something I appreciate a lot since it is virtually impossible to get bored even after the umpteenth listening session. But the, hands-down, best song among these twenty-two minutes is the fifth one: Love. Sex. Riot.. Not only does it have a catchy as hell melody but is also enhanced by guest vocals of the Attila singer, Chris Fronzack, who adds a special flavor with his fast and brutal vocals.

On an instrumental level the album has a very modern sound to it with a couple of “aha” moments such as sporadic use of turntables. Guitar- and drumwork are rather groove orientated and complement the two singers perfectly. To round things off there is a hidden track which is as close to hip-hop as the EP gets, with guest vocals of Snow Tha Product.

All in all, I can only say that this first release by Issues is a great start and I’m excited for what they can bring to the table in the future, because the only thing that’s “bad” about Black Diamonds is the length. Be sure to check back next weekend for part two of my comparison and in the meantime, check out the band’s Facebook page and the video below.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VuPEdTg7_k]