Most of us can attest to the sporadic sensation of feeling isolated, especially in a world that’s meant for everyone to magically harmonize in. Sure, seclusion is an unshakably pesky feeling, but when you think about it, there are a million other people out there who have felt the same exact way at one point or another. So, how do you deal? The shining beacon of hope for all the angsty adolescents and adults in the world is to listen to those who really understand where the darker emotions lie.
I can safely say that one of the leading influences in the heavier music genres, especially on a local scale, is Senses Fail. They are undoubtedly one of the emo-tastic greats with a sound that keeps on keeping on. Whether you are or have been a jock, a nerd, or a label-less clique drifter, don’t sweat it. For me, Senses Fail is the original hardcore band whose authenticity instilled hope in the hearts of everyone in my generation and beyond, mainly because their music isn’t targeted toward a specific group of people. Rather, it is meant for everyone to enjoy and relate to—social labelers need not apply.
Following the release of five successful albums, Senses Fail returned with a vengeance, as you can tell from their latest album, Pull The Thorns From Your Heart. Every track on this album sheds light on past, present, and future challenges. The synopsis of the entire album is summed up in a single power ballad, “The Fear Of An Unlived Life,” which stresses the lingering fear of living by the means of existing. In other words, you’re living, but you’re not experiencing all that life has to offer. Because of their instrumental and vocal consistency and overall raw intensity, Senses Fail have certainly stayed true to their role as the dominant punk powerhouse.
As a true music lover, it’s hard to ignore the highlighted characteristics a band has to offer, in this case it’s the intrusive sound variations combined with harsh vocals that basically mandate your attention in each track. It is as though the songs are demanding to be felt. The building, forceful subtext behind the lyrics, the radical heart-pounding beat of the drums, and the unbending guitar riffs, were all secretly screaming, “You will listen to this, and you will like it.” This implication was especially noticeable in tracks like “The Courage Of An Open Heart,” “Wounds,” “Take Refuge,” and “Pull The Thorns From Your Heart.”
In view of many modern punk bands on the scene today, Pull The Thorns From Your Heart separates itself from the masses by being yet another stepping stone in Senses Fail’s musical expedition since their 2002 debut. As for these other talented bands that often compete with the traditional hardcore punk genre we have come to know over the years, Pull The Thorns From Your Heart is a capable reminder that you can’t devalue a genuine article.