Just Left - Think Fast
Record Label: Standby Records
Release Date: October 27, 2010
Standby Records is a label that is on the label tier below the likes of Tragic Hero and Rise. While they have mostly metal bands on their label, they are at the point right now where they want to test out other genres to see if they could widen their scope a bit more. Chicago natives Just Left are one of those non-metal bands on Standby. They have been on the Warped Tour for two years and have opened for Fall Out Boy, The Audition, Hellogoodbye, and All Time Low. Just Left has recently released Think Fast which was produced by Ace Enders.
“Finding You In Yourself” starts off with an echo effect on the vocals. Once the effect is off, the vocals remind you of something/someone you have heard before, but somehow still manage to be fresh. The opening song shows you a lot of what the rest of the album holds in store. The vocals and guitars take full front to the ear, as the drums are very simplistic, and acts more like a bass than a drum. The track does not give you a taste of the vocals though. In the early going, he likes to switch up his voice and it keeps you interested in the early going. After the first three tracks, the vocals finally find a more solid middle ground, and it makes “Tell Me What You’re Thinkin’” slightly lackluster, as it is a letdown after three pretty solid pop-rock tracks.
“Just Forget It” then helps the album bounce back with a very refreshing song structure and song otherwise not found on the rest of the album. The beginning also includes a noteworthy acoustic guitar riff, which is a lot better than most of the electric riffs found on the album. At this point, the vocals are not monotone, but no one sound has been featured on two or more tracks, so it is on the verge of actually being a downside. “Time” then starts, and this problem seems to be solved, even though we had autotune on “Starting Now, I’m Starting Over”.
The drums up to this point are still failing to impress anyone, and the bass is right there with them. “Don’t Hold Your Breath” is mostly a full acoustic track, and it works to help bring any stray ears back to listening to the record. This track is followed by “Memmi” which bases part of its chorus on the line “You Had Me at Hello”. This song has grown from being my favorite track off the album to one of the worse.
After such a hot start, three of the first four songs being very good, Just Left takes a right turn and starts heading to pedestrian territory. As a pop album, Think Fast suffers for no memorable parts whatsoever, almost like the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving every year. The album will be best used for select tracks to be placed on summer playlists.