Jamie's Elsewhere - They Said A Storm Was Coming
Record Label: Victory Records
Release Date: February 16, 2010
Many on this site would suggest that the sing/scream metalcore formula infused with keys established by Underoath over five years ago has long been played out. That it's reached its max capacity and that much of what is around today are clones of the innovators of the genre and the innovators themselves. All of that being said, one could assume that there's no new acts to take notice of. That isn't entirely true; Jamie's Elsewhere have delivered a follow up worthy of a few ears.
While They Said A Storm Is Coming is nothing ground breaking, Jamie's Elsewhere would certainly tell you just that. However, they do strive for execution and that's where this record separates itself from the pack, if by only a little. TSASWC opens with "Seasons", a roaring track with rough screams and melodic clean vocals. New vocalist Aaron Pauley immediately shows vast improvement over the band's previous vocalist. Not only does he deliver passionate screams, but his clean vocals show range and lack any nasally undertones which plagued the band's debut record(as well as some identity issues which have now been resolved). Along with a better vocal performance, the band makes better use of keys on this record. The intro to both the title track and "Antithesis" are brilliant. The production, courtesy of Chango Studios and producer Cameron Mizell, help aid the success of the keys as they sound more like a fifth instrument as opposed to background noise. Despite some ofther releases produced by Mizell, this record features no auto-tuned clean vocals which is pleasant to discover(though shouldn't we not have to expect it?).
Of course, this record doesn't come without faults. One of the more annoying aspects of the record is the band's unwillingness to break free from their formula of screamed verses and clean choruses. It shows a definite lack of creativity to consistently use this structure. This pattern is present on nearly every song off TSASWC with the exception of "The Prodigal", which is the big clunker of this record. Being only seconds over two-minutes long, it's rather confusing how this track even made the record. True it shows versatility as the vocals are all clean and it's just Pauley singing over electronic instrumentals, but it disrupts the pace of this record by slowing things down far too much.
This style of music is no question polarizing. There are those who are completely turned off by it, while others seem to never get enough. If you consider yourself an open-minded music fan, They Said A Storm Was Coming is well worth a listen. It's far from being original, but Jamie's Elsewhere have released a record that does nearly everything right and makes for an enjoyable listen.