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Sick Puppies – Dressed Up as Life
Dressed Up As Life - Virgin Records
In my review for Red Jumpsuit Apparatus‘ Don’t Fake It, I said that they were pretty good but didn’t think they had the skills necessary to really break through. The songs were pretty good, but slightly generic and very safe and I felt that they were jumping into the radio-friendly emo rock pool way too late. I didn’t think there was enough innovativeness in the album to create make a splash.
Boy was I wrong.
The album, and the band, blew up thanks to the highly successful radio single Hands Down and now they’re headlining high profile tours like The Take Action Tour. Now, almost a year later, Virgin Recordsseems to have been able to track down another band who will follow in the exactly the same footsteps. The band is Sick Puppies and the album is Dressed Up As Life and while I still don’t think it’s that innovative, if it gets the right radio push it will soar through the charts.
Dressed Up As Live is a predictable but nevertheless enjoyable album right down the same lines of Don’t Fake It. Asshole Father is a silky smooth radio friendly rock track with a catchy hook and intense vocals singing “But you don’t / and you won’t / go against your asshole father.” It’s a near replica of Red Jumpsuit‘s Face Down. Speaking about near replicas, the album’s first single, All The Same, bears a striking resemblance to the acoustic ballad Guardian Angel on Don’t Fake It. It follows a similar pattern vocally with introspective lyrics and a generally slow, emotional feel backing the song. The biggest change in the album comes in the final track, The Bottom, which starts off heavily ala Used but then mellows down and somehow reminds me of Zebrahead and Out Of Your Mouth, leaving the listener with a somewhat disjointed listen.
The rest of the album, while unique in it’s own way, is still comfortably familiar. It’s very slick, very smooth and very radio-friendly. Slightly heavier and darker than Don’t Fake It, Dressed Up As Light is a guitar driven rock album. It has the right amount of breakdowns, the needed bridges, and they even throw in the obligatory screams every once in a while (see the final few chaotic seconds of Issues). So basically, it’s an album you’ve heard many times before. A few standout tracks here and there,a few forgettable tracks. Despite all of that, I still have a sinking sensation that I’d thoroughly enjoy myself if I saw them live. Predictable can be good sometimes.