Of Mice & Men’s Defy was one of my most anticipated album releases of the year. I only started getting into the band right before Austin Carlisle announced he was leaving, but I became a big fan in that short amount of time. It hit really hard when Carlisle had to leave and for a while, it seemed that the future of the band was in the air. When it was announced that bassist Aaron Pauley would be taking over the vocals, I had mixed feelings, but the new album would ultimately be the test that swayed my decision.
Defy starts off with title track “Defy,” which is a heavy, hard-hitting, fast-paced track. The intro of the song gets you interested, the heavy vocals pique your interest even more, and the chorus is what keeps you listening through to the next track. There’s a good mix of heavier tracks, like “Instinct,” as well as softer, gentler tracks like “Back To Me” or “Sunflower,” which are both favorites of mine on the album. “Back To Me” has more melodic singing than screaming versus other tracks, but holds its own amongst the heavy tracks, like “Warzone.”
This album still has that Of Mice & Men sound that I’ve come to know and love; the heaviness, the guitar, and the beat are still the sound that I expect from the band. It is not the exact same Of Mice & Men that it was before because Pauley is different from Carlisle. The sound has evolved a bit and changed with the new vocalist, but this album will appeal to old fans as much as it will to new fans. I think Of Mice & Men have done a great job with Defy overall and I see this as a contender for one of my favorite albums of the year.
Post by Karen Shalev
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