Album Review: Palisades – Palisades

Believe it or not, there was a time not all that long ago that people didn’t have a constant connection the world at their fingertips. For all of the fantastic accomplishments that have been and will continue to be achieved through the utilization of the internet, there comes a time when people need to disconnect from an “always-on” reality. By disconnecting, it allows people to accomplish feats in a different manner and block out the noise of the constantly expanding web. While this is a common introspective ideology that people slowly decide upon, musicians on the other hand have begun doing the same over the years at an increasing frequency. One of the more recent acts to do so is post hardcore outfit Palisades who have had an up and down past twelve months due to lineup changes and a desire for a different direction. In order to write the best record possible, the band set a self-imposed social media blackout and by doing so, accomplished what they set out to do – create a record that is as much for themselves as it is for their fans.

[tw-toggle title=”About Palisades”]
Genre: Post Hardcore | Alternative
Label: Rise Records
Release: January 20, 2017
Connect: Facebook | Twitter
Purchase: iTunes | Google Play

Other than many people being relatively disappointed in the direction Palisades took with their last album, Mind Games, there doesn’t seem to be a consensus on what their best work is. That all changes with this release as Palisades is the culmination of years of songwriting and personal growth that the band have achieved since they formed. It has a more realistic underlying tone as the album strays away from simplistic teenager or young adult problems or partying and love; instead it focuses more on the band members themselves and things they’ve gone through while at the same time discussing problems in the world that shouldn’t be swept under the rug. This comes back through on their focus of writing a record for more than just themselves and being a lifeboat for people to connect with. These thematic forays are extremely noticeable on tracks like “Memories”, “Dancing With Demons” and “Personal”, but truly live throughout the whole album.

Palisades – Fall (Official Music Video)

Merch:… iTunes: I wanna fall And never once look back I wanna know I make you feel like that I wanna make this the start of something So can you say that you want it all?

While the ideologies that live under the sound of the album cohesively come together, Palisades overall sound feels slightly disjointed, interrupting what could’ve been an incredible album flow. The record opens up with the aggressive sounding single “Aggression”, which is one of two tracks that have a real post hardcore sound to them, with “Through Hell” being the other. This is followed up by “Cold Heart (Warm Blood)” which, other than its chorus, is more alternative in style and sound. What follows is a span of 4 more songs that appeal more to the alternative and r&b-core style of music than what Palisades were previously outputting, before once again hitting an aggressive song in “Through Hell”. For example, “Let Down” relies heavily on an effect-driven electronic beat with sultry vocals and lyrics while “Dark” is a broody, dark pop song that further relies on electronics to drive the music. The record closes out with another span of rock and alternative soundscapes, ending on a high note with the well composed “Personal”.

Anytime a band chooses to self-title their album, the pressure and scrutiny they will be under seemingly increases ten-fold. Palisades increased expectations further when they announced this record, as they mentioned how it essentially pushed them to new heights, addressing problems that were incredibly difficult to talk about. Additionally, this album is the first collection of songs that the band has put out with newly added members Graves and Brandon Elgar, both of whom are relatively experienced in the musical world. Even with the massive pressure, lineup changes and directional shift, Palisades show no sign of slowing down anytime soon as this is easily their best record to date as they’ve taken their sound to new heights and explored new avenues. With a stronger focus on a singular direction rather than hitting various styles, whatever they do next could be something truly special.

What Are Your Thoughts!

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