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Music Reviews

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Review by Madison Ouellette | May 12, 2015 at 12:00 PM


“We don’t have to obey the trend”

Since reuniting in 2011, The Early November has traded quintessential early emo for upbeat pop-rock. As The Early November ditch raw emotion and sound for polished maturity, their new record showcases a band that has really grown up with us over the years and Imbue will be a summer anthem for old and new fans alike.

After signing to Drive-Thru Records in 2002, The Early November became a staple band in mid-2000’s emo. With The Room’s Too Cold and their massive triple LP The Mother, The Mechanic, and The Path, the band became known for their raw yet controlled sound. Then, in 2007 the band decided to go on hiatus, and then reunited and released In Currents in 2012, and gave us a taste of The Early November’s journey into their new sound. And now, here we are with, Imbue, an explosive album from head to toe. Their emo roots are still there, but these songs hit so much harder than they ever have before. You might even find yourself thinking the production matches that of Third Eye Blind’s Blue… and that’s a really good thing.

This album still has its fair share of wistful tracks that are perfect to blast in the car with the windows down. Guitar-centered “Boxing Timelines” reminiscences of young love and the feelings that come with growing up and moving on. Ace Enders looks back on the nuances of first romances with sweet nostalgia… “Every note that we wrote in a box / with every ticket from every movie that I ever saw / Every picture I come across I’m amazed with.” Like most of the tracks on this album, Ace deviates from any clichés and elicits imagery and metaphors to form intended complex emotional vibes.

The album ends with “Nothing Lasts Forever,” a track that quickly builds forceful guitars and the careful contrast between Ender’s subdued vocals and unapologetic yelling. With another solid release under their belt, this is no longer considered a comeback. With Imbue, The Early November has reclaimed their place in our hearts.

Buy it, Stream it, or Skip it? Buy it because you’ll get the full-band version of In Currents‘ “Digital Age” as a bonus track.

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