It may take a while, but every now and then the planets do actually align and everything comes together. It took some six years for vocalist Anthony Green to find his way back to the band he helped form, and a further six for their third album to see the light of day; but they do say that good things come to those who wait.
To be honest, “good” would be an understatement; Saosin is an enormously popular band for a reason and on ‘Along The Shadow’ they show why. Whether it’s in the post-hardcore screams, the understated emo or the searing alt-rock guitars, this band is on fire.
‘The Silver String’ gets things off to a strong, hard but melodic start, with the abrasive metallic edge to the guitars and a catchy chorus. It’s followed by ‘Ideology is Theft’ which starts out more measured, but soon ups the ante with a pulsating guitar line in the bridge and a variety of riffs; the arrangement is a little crowded, although it certainly shows what they can do.
The album then progresses through a series of quality tracks with moods ranging from the beautifully atmospheric to outright vitriol. ‘The Stutter Says a Lot’ has one foot in pop, whereas ‘Old Friends’ is bordering on the doom laden, whilst the frantic ‘The Secret Meaning of Free’ has an undercurrent of anger to the harsh vocal and heavyweight attack to the finale. It’s all quality stuff, yet ‘Racing Toward a Red Light’ stands out for its clever arrangement, drawing the most from the emotion. The superb ‘Count Back From Ten’, meanwhile, is equally heartfelt as it delivers a killer chorus and epic guitar lines.
By the excellent finale of ‘Control and the Urge to Pray’, there has been a rollercoaster of emotions as these eleven darkly textured tracks deliver the goods in style.
‘Along the Shadow’ by Saosin is out on May 20th on Epitaph Records.
Words by Edward Layland (@EdwardLayland)