Sylar recently put out their second album ‘Help!’ and although it’s a step in a different direction compared to their older material it’s still awesome. The first thing I noticed is that the cleans are way tighter than they were in the past. It results in their songs sounding more melodic while not compromising any of their heaviness. A great example of this is around the 40 second mark in “Soul Addiction”; the cleans jump in and actually add energy to the song which is hardly ever the case in this genre. Then in the next song “Assume” the cleans are soothing which is kind of a weird word to describe them as but it fits perfectly. Definitely within the first few songs the first huge thing I noticed was how they were not only including more clean singing but that the cleans were so dynamic and weren’t limited to a single style. Sylar is one of those bands where you can tell where they come from based off their sound (Queens, New York) and I say that because you can totally hear the city / street influences in their music. It’s probably because they have subtle hip hop elements in their music and it’s really cool because they mix it in without inhibiting any of the metalcore aspects. Probably the most direct example of that is in the turntable stuff at the start of “Assume” (kind of sounds like the start to an Issues song) but a more subtle example is the start of “Dark Daze”. Actually, if you’re into Issues I’d be pretty confident saying that you’ll probably like Sylar.
They approach the cleans and screams way differently but you get the same kind of feel from their music. I think Sylar finally found the sound they were always going for on ‘Help!’. Their old stuff definitely made more of an attempt to be heavy and looking back at it now it sort of has a try-hard feel to it like they were trying to fit a certain image. ‘Help!’ still has a ton of those heavy elements but feels way more relaxed; you can tell it’s the sound that they’ve been working towards this whole time. The album closes out with “Maintain Closure” and it’s a perfect way to wind it down while still mixing in some heavy vocals despite the instruments still tapering off. Overall this is an extremely strong album and I hope it really helps get their name out there.