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chaos takes the wheel and i am a passenger by awakebutstillinbed: screamo perfection

Album: chaos takes the wheel and i am a passenger Artist: awakebutstillinbed Genre: emo, rock Sub-Genres: indie rock, alt, screamo, post-hardcore Label: Tiny Engines Non-Airable Tracks: savior, redlight, passenger Description: On Thursday night I had the absolute pleasure of watching awakebutstillinbed, one of my favorite fifth-wave emo bands, play at Groundworks. Despite the small crowd of around 40, the band played as if it was a stadium show, giving every lyric, instrumental breakdown, and emotion their absolute all. One reason might have been because this show served as their record release show, as they announced during the show that "it's 9pm now so... our record is out... as of right now" before a brief silence acknowledging of all the hard work that surely went into creating this project, followed by the band launching into "far", the third track on this fantastic album. On the ride back to the dorms from Groundworks, I started this album and was immediately blown away. The talent the band has for immediately creating energy, exemplified in their past with tracks like "life" and "Fear", begins from the second you hit play on tracks like "adapt" and "road". This is without even mentioning the blistering intensity of "redlight" (a song that made me dance like an absolute idiot at the aformentioned Groundworks show), with an excellent performance from Shannon Taylor, the lead vocalist of the band. Even when the band takes a second to slow things down on tracks like "savior" and the beginning of the closer, "passenger", the instrumental work and lyrics that cut like a knife keep you engaged. While I might need a bit to connect with the lyrics before I could begin to write about them, (they're just so good I don't want to rush any interpretations), I'll say for now I really like the themes that permeate the record, like leaving behind elements of your past but still feeling like they somehow describe you in some way. The complex way that the instruments and vocals groove together sometimes reminds me of some of my favorite songs from older bands like Cap'n Jazz and Rainer Maria. This record is a testament to the complex emotions and power that the best fifth-wave emo albums can achieve. This album ends up high on the list of my favorite projects to release this year, joining other fantastic albums from Home Is Where, Jerome's Dream, and Parannoul. Check this project out, perhaps play some tracks on your show, and support the band this next month as they make their way around the US! Sounds Like:

  1. Michael Cera Palin

  2. Foxtails

  3. Football, Etc

  4. Short Fictions

  5. I Hate Sex

Recommended Tracks:

  1. ​far

  2. savior

  3. passenger

Reviewer’s Name: Micah Dalton Date of Review: 10/21/23

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