Artist vs. Poet – Favorite Fix CD Review
By: Tyler Hoppel
Forming a semi-generic, yet appealing sound, and having a bit of luck was all it took for this Texas based pop punk band to get signed. (Artist vs. Poet signed to an indie label called Fearless Records). Soon after signing came a few EP’s, that paved the way for their debut full-length Favorite Fix. Artist Vs. Poet couldn’t possibly fit the Fearless signing pattern of energetic poppy rock bands any better. Favorite Fix was recorded with multiple producers including Zack Odom, Kenneth Mount (All Time Low, Mayday Parade, Cartel) and Mike Green (Paramore, Breathe Carolina). The result is a clear pop rock record with all the bells and whistles.
Giving Artist vs. Poet the benefit of the doubt and a closer, fair look into the album’s contents should probably be given to make sure some hidden treasure don’t lie in wait. At the heart of Artist Vs. Poet rests pretty typical pop punk melodies. Yea, I mean they add crunchy effects to their guitars, sample beats and eccentric lyrics that keep your headphones in your ears. But if you take away all off that, all that lies, is a simple pop rock that I used to play when I was in a shitty band in high school. I guess what Im saying is, without the big name producers this record wouldn’t have any substance.
I knew I was in for a let down as soon as the opening track “Car Crash” kicks off with vocals singing, “bah dah dah dah dah, dah dah, dah dah dah”, followed by some “oohs” and “ahhs” in the chorus. That, in a nutshell, is the foundation of the band’s sound, with slight deviations along the way to keep the self-plagiarism at an almost bearable level. “Adorable” and the title track “Favorite Fix” are all bland and boring. The track “We’re All The Same” starts off sounding like a Postal Service rip-off (looks like someone else is trying to bank off of that genre). Ballads seem to be this band’s strongest suit; “Miserably Loving You” and “Alive” make up for the frequent clichés in their lyrical subjects by honing their melodies and harmonies. The prior two songs features a skillful buildup and release of near epic proportions. “Giving Yourself Away” may be the best song off Favorite Fix, but it may be little to late to save this record. These three tracks aside; “Miserably Loving You”, “Alive” and “Giving Yourself Away” Favorite Fix fails to impress and joins the ever building stack of bands trying too hard to do what another bands have done that preceded them. In some sort of irony vocalist Tarcy Thompson ends the record by singing “how do we cope with things we hate”.
Favorite Fix stand-out tracks – “Miserably Loving You”, “Alive” and “Giving Yourself Away”
Favorite Fix track-listing -
01. Car Crash
03. Favorite Fix
04. Unconscious Reality
05. Damn Rough Night
06. We’re all The Same
07. So Much I never Said
08. Miserably Loving You
09. Broke But Not Broken
10. He’s Just Not Me
12. Giving Yourself Away
Similar To: Forever The Sickest Kids, The Friday Night Boys, Sing It Loud