We Versus The Shark: Dirty Versions

The fact that every member but the drummer of We Versus The Shark switch off on instruments and singing like a Chinese fire drill is enough to make the Athens, GA band interesting to listen to. But, with the quartet’s mix of aggressive melodies and wild vocals, WVTS delivers a fascinating collection of songs that can only be described as organized chaos, considering there is no way to easily sum up the blend of alternative rock, metal, punk and ambient sound the band offers. Somehow, the chaos works–making the band’s latest album, Dirty Versions, a standout record.

From “I Am The President Of The World,” two minutes of violent percussion and post-metal guitar solos bookended with static noise, to “Mountaineering,” where the sole chick member offers a mellow point with her soft vocals, Dirty Versions provides 11 dynamic tracks, all of which manage to come together to create a solid flow.

The album is loud and energetic throughout, free of dull moments. Notable tracks “Mr. Ego Death” and “I Am A Caffeinated Corpse” each do a fine job displaying the band members’ instrumental dexterity, with members swapping instruments on the two songs, while the former is just as captivatingly melodic as the latter. While the male vocals are hard to distinguish between members, Samantha Paulsen’s voice is always a pleasant surprise, popping up at the most random of times in either the form of singing or schreeching outbursts.

Despite the layers of instruments in each song, every track carries its own melody, though some catchier than others. Opener “Hello Blood” has one of the catchier guitar melodies, while its vigorous disposition sets a standard which the rest of the album meets and exceeds.

In A Word: Brilliant