Four Year Strong, one of my favourite pop punk bands for a few years now, have released their third album a few months ago. Just after hearing one song on their first record, I realised this band had potential to become big. Their first album “Rise Or Die Trying” was filled with great pop punk tunes with hardcore breakdowns. The second record Enemy Of The World, released in 2010 was even better and bigger. That’s all on the bright side for this band. 2011 hasn’t been their best year. They parted ways with their Keyboard player after a long friendship. This has to be the reason why this new record is called “In Some Way We Shape Our Form.” So I was curious to hear what this new record sounded like after two killer albums. Have they gone even bigger, or is this record just an honorable mention in their career?
The Infected is the first song on this new record. It has a very strong start. But after a few notes, I noticed that their sound has changed in a completely different direction. The song constantly switches from a fast paced to a slower tempo. What I really like about this song is the way they added some rapping during the middle of the song. It simply a great opener and keeps me stoked for what is about to come.
Then the second song comes in. This one is called The Security Of The Familiar The Tranquility Of Repetition. What a long song name. That’s something that they are really good at. Finding crazy song titles. Besides the title: this song rocks. It has a catchy opening tune on guitar, the great combination of the two singers and a drum beat that wants you to move your head up and down constantly. The song ends with a blast and pulls you straight into the third track.
What’s up next? It’s one of my favourite songs called Stuck In The Middle. This song reminds me a bit of Nickelback but with classic Four Year Strong elements such as dual singing, great guitar riffs and blistering drum beats. This song also contains one of the funniest lyrics I’ve ever heard from them. Just in the middle of the second verse they sing
I cough the dust out of my lungs and spit down the drain, I reach inside my head and pull the cobwebs from my brain
After this verse the song builds up to a heavy middle part, before it ends with a breathtaking finale.
If we move on we’ve got their first single, called Just Drive. When I first heard this song I got goosebumps instead. The intro is the best intro I’ve heard in a while from any band. The lyrics of the song just beg you to sing along. They are catchy as hell. On the other hand the rest of the song is great, but it’s not their best, because it’s too repetitive and lacks the Four Year Strong aggressive power.
The next track Fairweather Fan is a special track. It’s a song that is dedicated to the real Four Year Strong who stuck with them in their entire career. For me it’s the most pop punk minded song on their new effort. It reminds me of their first record called Rise Or Die Trying, but with more mature influenced songwriting.
When I first heard Sweet kerosene I thought I was listening to The Foo Fighters. That’s because it has the typical Foo Fighters sound throughout the whole song. But like “Stuck In The Middle” it has the same elements that made me realize I was listening to Four Year Strong. This song is a great addition to end of the first half of this memorable disc so far.
The opener of the second half is called Falling On You. When I heard their record was delayed because of this song, I was bummed out. But this frustration went away when I heard this one. With this song they are aiming for a bigger audience, which is great. It’s a straightforward radio rock song with hard-hitting drums and guitar riffs.
Next up is Heaven Wasn’t Build To Hold Me. This song is one of the best song I’ve ever heard from this band. It starts with an explosive intro before the singers start to rap during the verses. During the choruses the band uses gang vocals to make the song more spicy and intense. For me it’s the standout track on their new record.
With that being said, the next track Unbreakable has already started. This track pulls out the speed out of the record. It’s a more heartfelt song with a deeper meaning. It’s about never giving up and be strong no matter what happens in your life. You can describe the song as a rock ballad but with a faster pace.
Bring On The World is a classic For Year Strong song, nothing more nothing less. This song has a hard rock feel. Like “Just Drive” It’s a great song, but it lacks creativity to be a killer tune.
So this new record has almost come to an end. First let’s start with the second to last song, called Fight The Future. This song simply took my breath away. The verses make you want to dance, the choruses are heavy and hard. It ends with a distorted guitar before the last track comes in.
Only The Meek Get Pinched The Bold Survive is the last one on this new album. And Oh my god it’s amazing. It’s starts with a great piano tune during the first verse before the song explodes and opens up to the best song I’ve heard from them in a while. It constantly builds up and explodes with each chorus, before it slowly fades out towards the end of this song, to end the record in a memorable way.
They definitely aimed for a different sound on this record. I listened to it many times and for me one thing is clear. With this record there are aiming for a bigger crowd and some radio air play. This is great, because this band deserves to be known by a large audience. There’s only one major thing that I missed on this new record. Where the hell are the breakdowns that I’ve loved during their two last albums? Besides that the new record is a masterpiece and a great addition to my Four Year Strong cd collection.