At The Drive-In
In/Casino/Out (Fearless Records)
By: Alex Steininger
A five-piece from El Paso, Texas, At The Drive-In pays emo with punk and hardcore touches. On their second full-length, they show both a melodic side and a metal to the petal, yell and scream release side that serves as a nice tension releaser.
But, their 'yell and scream release' side can get very old after a few tracks. The band just sits there and bashes out typical rock 'n roll with an emo feel, all the while trying to incorporate hardcore muscles to the music. Hiding behind everything is there melodic side, which is quite enjoyable. They never focus on their melodic side, though.
Except on 'Hulahoop Wounds," which shows both directions the band is capable of heading. Starting out soft and melodic, it gradually progresses into some emo-punk that sits on the lap of hardcore. They begin very understandable as they calmly sing, and by the time the song ends they're yelling with passion and emotion. Beautifully crafted, this is the perfect representation of what I feel the band is all about.
Of course, the rest of the album isn't like this. They slip in a bunch of melodic parts here and there, but the real emphasis is on their emo, which always eventually tries to sit next to their hardcore influences and bridge the gap.
A decent album if you're into emo, but the lack of concentration on their melodic side seems to let the rest of the material slip by too easily. As they yell, you'll eventually start to drown them out. Too bad, because they could be a pretty good band. I'll give this disc a C.