New Years Day is a female lead alternative metal band from Anaheim, CA set to release their 3rd full length album Malevolence on October 2nd. New Years Day is not a band I was particularly familiar with but they have built a strong fan following and the new album has garnered quite a bit of hype. The band is touring with Motionless In White later in the year as well as running a headliner tour with support from Get Scared, Eyes Set to Kill and New Volume. Nobody can deny the surge of popularity that New Years Day has had recently. That being said I was curious to review their upcoming album. Wading into unknown waters and with little to no idea on what to expect, I ventured into New Years Day 3rd studio album Malevolence.
Malevolence is your typical alternative metal album. Full of gang choruses, crunchy guitar riffs and melodic vocals. Malevolence does little to bring anything new to the table. That is not to say the album is necessarily bad it’s just very uninspiring aside from a few select songs. The contrast of the alternative metal sound to the heavier sound doesn’t flow well and can seem forced at times.
One of the biggest detractors of the album is the vocals by frontwoman Ash Costello. Ash sounds very flat throughout the entire album. It’s hard to pick out any real emotion throughout and seem like she isn’t putting any real effort into it. Ash is obviously a talented singer but the delivery on her vocals are lacking and that has ends up being a major detractor.
“New Years Day does little to differentiate this release from any of their previous records. It’s an album that is sure to please long time fans of the band but has a hard time standing out as a record that is truly great.”
There are a few songs that have some catchy guitar riffs. Songs such as “Kill or Be Killed” and “Anthem of the Unwanted” have some fun riffs that help breathe life into a somewhat lackluster album. There are some subtle electronics integrated like in the songs “Relentless” and “Scream” that make for a decent song. The production overall is satisfactory but at times the guitars can sound a little muddy and drowned out.
Overall Malevolence is what you have come to expect a band of this genre. New Years Day often delves into the darker side lyrically and that sadly come off cheesy at times. They do little to differentiate this release from any of their previous records. It’s an album that is sure to please long time fans of the band but has a hard time standing out as a record that is truly great. Aside from a few standout songs such as “Anthem of the Unwanted”, “Relentless” and “Kill or Be Killed”, the album is one that doesn’t leave any lasting impression. It’s an album that is worth a listen and is by no means bad, just forgettable.
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