Roses Are Red – What Became of Me
Release Date: June 13, 2006
Record Label: Trustkill Records
Overall Score: 6.4
The progressiveness of a band often determines the element that makes or breaks their careers. Have they learned to fix the mistakes from the last record? Is there a sense of depth that was woven into the chord progression and lyrics? What are the areas that the band has changed and is it for the better? What consequences and circumstances have they gone through musically since their prior release? Do they even produce tolerable music? Certain questions should be taken into consideration concerning the growth of any artist and with Roses Are Red, there is no exception. With their last release, Conversations, an immature yet well-received debut, the Rochester, NY band have regrouped and reemerged with a collection of songs that put their freshman release to shame. Vincent Minervino (vocals), Tom Zenns (guitar), Shaun Murphy (guitar), Kevin Mahoney (bass) and Michael Lasaponara (drums) have come together in an effort worthy to show they can build momentum and showcase variety in the musicianship.
While Roses Are Red prove they are a hard working band in their touring, the album doesn’t shine as bright as it could. Despite no overpowering mistakes or dreadful tracks, What Becomes Of Me reaches through the band’s ability to create 11 songs that sound nothing alike. Both heavy and light ballads (“The Last Time (Come With Me Tonight)" and “Just Say The Words”) mixed with strong rock anthems (“These Days”) and swinging, memorable choruses, the album still lacks a sense of cohesiveness. Now I’m not necessarily suggesting a theme or concept album but strictly speaking musically, tracks do not bleed into one another effectively. In the same way, the tracks often reach without a point of climax. The title track is a crashing rock ballad that streams in and throughout touchy instrumentals from the guitars and percussions, which is perhaps the most noticeable difference between this album and their prior work. One of my favorite songs on the whole album is the prolonged ballad “Just Say The Words.” This tracks literally swept me off my feet. But as you all know, I’m a sucker for ballads.
Vince’s voice is desirable but shows little effort in stretching for a larger range. Where choruses and bridges could be elongated on final syllables, they end with punctuation. Even then, the vocals aren’t means for distraction. If anything renders distraction it is the step up in guitar work. Zenns, Murphy and Mahoney all show an ability to play. Lyrically, the songs don’t show a large amount of thought-provoking narrative or advice, more so we see a theme of not giving up hope, pushing forward and holding onto memories.
Producer Brian McTernan (Circa Survive, Thrice) leads Roses Are Red down the right path, accentuating their maturity and growth as a refreshed arrangement, showing that not only can they make strides in becoming better but feel comfortable in the risks of bringing in new members. By and large, Roses Are Red do not flail through a record in hopes of hitting the right chord but rather illuminate their depth and variety.