Despite delivering The Amity Affliction with the staggering Holy Grail of four consecutive on-debut #1 albums when it was released in late 2018, Misery was a mess.
A self-conscious attempt at a Bring Me the Horizon-esque musical redirection after the creative carbon-copying of their three previous (massive-selling) albums, everything about it felt wrong, resulting in a work that left both fans and critics as confounded as The Amity Affliction must have been to its reception: an album that peaked at the top of the chart, but no one seemed to like.
To the devout then, first single All My Friends are Dead must have come as dark relief, Joel Birch ripping his throat out as the band unleash their heaviest song in quite literally a decade. Less raw but catchy thanks to Ahren Stringer’s hook-ridden chorus, Soak Me in Bleach is up there too, some of the best pure metalcore this band has done. With a creative aesthetic that continues their exploration of depression and the frustration of existence tempered with glimpses of hope, what makes Everyone Loves You compelling compared to the last few albums is its honesty – which Misery lacked – and compassion, something missing from Heartache simply by that album’s near straight-up repeating of previous formulas.
This isn’t an album without its share of filler. Just Like Me, for example, exists purely as a pit anthem, ditto for Baltimore Rain with its ‘Smoke ’em if you got ’em’ refrain; perversely, while the electro-pop completely backfired on Misery, they haven’t abandoned it completely – the ballad Aloneliness sits somewhere between Imagine Dragons and a deep cut from Silverchair’s last album. It just seems weird. On the other hand, there’s the old bait-and-switch on Born to Lose, with a clean verse/growled chorus combo supported by a massively catchy bouncing riff. It’s all a little bit uneven, but it’s also Amity starting to find themselves again as they continue their battle between internal turmoil and outward expectations. Not perfect, but not terrible either.
- All My Friends Are Dead
- Soak Me in Bleach
- All I Do is Sink
- Baltimore Rain
- Just Like Me
- Born to Lose
- Fever Dream