By Zach Hitt
Restless Streets, Albany-based metal, delivered their full-length debut, Sincerely, on June 25th. The record, produced by Landon Tewers (of The Plot in You), tells a lot about the band; their story, their ideals, and how far they’ve come: from being pipe dreamers playing at the smallest venues as youths, to becoming icons of the 518 music scene.
Sincerely has both strong and weak points, but will definitely leave listeners satisfied from the dramatic opening moments of “Young & Awake” to the climactic close of “Sincerely”, the title track. Let’s start with the strong suit.
Very few times does one go to a concert where each member of the audience is not only involved in singing and moving to every lyric, but also connecting to them. There is something to be said about a band whose lyrics are so “relatable” that they pull at the strings of every listener. Time Alone, a contemplative track which tells the story about life in the Capital Region, allows hometown fans to take a journey of memory with the band. For every other track, all listeners might say, “hey, these guys understand what I’m going through!”
Sound is equally as important as lyrics, no arguments. In fact, for this effort, Restless Streets have reeled in an air-tight sound; every instrumentalist is on top of his game and in synch with every other band member. Nick Dumar and John Alund have a clear idea of how to layer the backline to sound strong. Equally, along with Brian Nellis’ dynamic keyboard abilities, Brandon John and Kyle Carpenter deliver a nothing-but-energetic performance on guitars.
But that is not all! Over time, bands change how they sound. Rush added keyboards, the Police started playing around with reggae, and Black Flag was joined by Henry Rollins. To change sound over time is part of the normal evolution of any band, metal or not. However, Restless Streets has proved to listeners that on some of the best tracks of the album, they are both in touch with their old sound, which die-hard fans will love, and can easily evolve. Don’t take my word for it. Check out the re-vamped “Beautiful Friends,” or “Time Alone.” For their newer sound, “Peria” is one of the best cuts on the album.
Sure, as with any album, they have weaknesses. Some of the words Logan Carpenter, the vocalist, screams, are hard to understand. However, he is a gift when it comes to cleans. Additionally, Brandon John and Kyle “KCigs” Carpenter have written a few cliché “breakdowns” into the album, but on the other hand, the fact that they’re few in number keeps the album moving along smoothly.
Overall, this album is at the 7.5/10 range. It’s solid for a first effort and will leave fans wanting more. Check it out!