Having only an EP as a previous release to their debut full-length, I wasn’t too sure what to expect going into The White Noise’s AM/PM.
The intro track, “Innocent Until Birth,” has almost a minute until anything interesting happens. As much as I like a building intro, this didn’t spark anything in me. The whole song ends up feeling and sounding more like just a menagerie of sounds, and drags the value of the song by itself down. The first song, luckily, doesn’t represent the entire album too much. “Bite Marks,” the album’s lead single, shows what The White Noise can do. TWN combines hardcore, grittiness, and anger with this insatiable catchiness. Any hard rock fan will be singing along with “Bite Marks’” chorus “Sinking your teeth into me / Let me bleed, let me bleed / Sharpened your teeth on the weak / Now I’m so black and blue.” Following, a re-recorded version of “Picture Day” from the band’s debut EP (Aren’t You Glad?, 2016) appears on the album. The song brings out all the same aspects as “Bite Marks,” with more graphic lyrics like “I set myself on fire now /I’ll light a match and watch the flames burn through my house” that help draw a vivid image in your mind. “I Lost My Mind (In California)” hangs on the border between spoken word and rap. It feels a bit inspired by Sum 41’s “Fat Lip,” and somehow TWN are able to pull the song off almost too well. The track might be a bit out of place on the album, but is a banger for sure. The drums and background vocals on track seven, “All Drugs Go To Heaven,” give the song a huge feeling, something you’d expect to see Bring Me The Horizon to be playing inside a stadium. The first ballad on the record, “Montreal,” lingers to the point where it sounds nagging. “Montreal” is also the point where the record as a whole slows. Lyrically, I love “24 Hour Revenge Therapy.” “Admit we’re addicted to the reflection of who we think we are” and “I see it, the way you smile when you’re pretending / The hand of death with new poison” are some of the standout lines for me, but sonically, the song doesn’t live up to what I wish it could be. I wish I could combine “24 Hour Revenge Therapy” lyrics with the soaring sounds of “All Drugs Go To Heaven.” Album closer “Sunspots” almost hits that sound I want, but only for its choruses, but I wish it could continue throughout the song. In all, AM/PM has some fantastic, catchy hardcore hits, that knock the ball out of the park, but a couple songs leave me feeling like they’re almost unfinished, just waiting to be fleshed out into a full, hard rock anthem.
Overall: The White Noise further perfect their blend of catchiness within the hardcore scene with a couple songs off their debut length, AM/PM, but some tracks fall a bit short.
Review by Shane Haley