It's a really good record. They sound like Incubus meets Saosin on this one. It's an improvement in every area of their music. I wouldn't say it's less catchy, I'd say it takes more time to really appreciate the songs. The songs are also more complex and the production is huge. The dude's got great pipes.
It's not perfect but it's a bold move for the band. There are misteps like some really chessy ballads by the end of the record and in the 2nd half of the record, some songs seem to fall a little flat.
But congrats to them for this step forward !
I can agree with you. However, this isn't the band I've loved for years, and even though there's an improvement, I just can't get into the songs.