Later this summer, One Gun Shy will release its next full-length studio recording to the masses. Eye of the Storm, the band’s third album, is an aptly titled record. That is because over the course of its 11 songs, it kicks up quite the musical storm that will appeal to any 90s and 2000s rock fan. From start to finish, this latest effort from the independent rock act will keep those target audiences engaged and entertained. That is especially due to the arrangements that make up the record’s body. They will be discussed shortly. The songs’ lyrical content plays into the record’s whole, too and will be discussed later. The album’s sequencing puts the finishing touch on its whole. It does just as much to ensure the target audiences’ maintained engagement as the album’s musical and lyrical content. That being the case, it deserves note, too. When it is joined with those other elements, the whole of those items makes Eye of the Storm a work that is certain to be a success among its key fans.
One Gun Shy’s new album Eye of the Storm is a strong new effort from the Washington state-based rock band. It is a work that is certain to appeal to fans of rock from the 90s and early 2000s, as it exhibited through the musical arrangements presented across this record. Right off the top, audiences get an arrangement in ‘Constellation’ that can easily be likened to works from Three Days Grace, Shinedown and other similar acts. Immediately after that, audiences get an arrangement in the album’s title track that is akin to heavier works from perhaps Theory of a Deadman as well as, again, Three Days Grace and even to Soil and Shinedown. As if that isn’t enough, ‘I’m Free’ takes listeners back to the songs that bridged the late 80s and early 90s with its driving riffs, bombastic solos and equally solid time keeping. ‘Hard Reality,’ which comes roughly at the album’s halfway point, conjures thoughts at times of perhaps Stone Temple Pilots and of so many established blues-based bands with its semi-acoustic, blues based arrangement. Things get even more interesting as the band works its way through ‘For Me,’ which opens the second half of this album. That is because its arrangement, set alongside front man Neirah “Stone” Hart, at times conjures thoughts of certain works from Killswitch Engage (from the band’s Howard Jones era). The song’s bridge, however, is classic late 80s/early 90s rock riffage. The juxtaposition of the two sounds definitely makes for an interesting mix here. Things take quite a dramatic change in ‘Lies’ and ‘Dying To Make It’ as the band suddenly lends itself to comparisons with Prong circa 1994 (the year Cleansing was released). To say that this change of sound and pace was unexpected is putting it lightly. At the same time though, it’s a pleasant change of pace. That’s because it serves to show the band’s range, musically speaking. That wide range is just one of the album’s strengths. Its lyrical content is, collectively, one more of those strengths.
The lyrical themes presented throughout EOTS are, collectively speaking, just as important to the record’s whole as its musical material. Yes, there are some songs centered on the standard matter of personal relationships, but those songs are not the album’s only entries. ‘Zombie,’ which musically takes listeners back to Motley Crue’s heyday, seems to take the current popularity of the zombie fad and uses it for its own song. ‘Until The End,’ the album’s penultimate track, comes across as a commentary about finding one’s own self both within one’s self and as part of the world in whole. It also seems to present a message of personal strength, in connection, to that primary message, enhancing the song’s lyrical content even more. ‘Dying To Make It,’ another of the album’s later entries, also strays from the standard fare of personal relationships as Hart sings, “Why can’t we see/What it means/To be alive/Why must we bleed/Just to get through this life/I’m dying to make it.’ The additional notes of “I can’t feel anything at all/I can’t see anything at all” adds to the realization that this is not a work about personal relationships but seemingly rather about navigating life’s trials and tribulations. It is one more way in which the band keeps things interesting for listeners on this record, instead of just front loading it with loads of songs of broken relationships. When it is considered alongside the album’s collective musical arrangements, the whole of those elements serves to show even more clearly why EOTS is indeed another interesting effort from One Gun Shy. It still is not the last of the album’s most important elements. The record’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.
The sequencing of EOTS is so important because, as with records in any genre, without well thought out sequencing, none of the music or lyrics mean anything. Luckily for the band, plenty of thought was put into this album’s sequencing. Musically speaking, the album starts with a bang in ‘Constellation.’ The use of the electronics as a lead-in to the song’s guitar-driven main body gives the song just enough variety while also keeping the song’s pacing upbeat throughout. In regards to its lyrical content, yes it does seem to center on a personal relationship — as does its follow-up, ‘Eye of the Storm’ — but it is presented in such fashion lyrically that it doesn’t come across as being too caught up in itself. ‘Eye of the Storm’ walks that line a little bit more than ‘Constellation’ but never goes over said line, which will make listeners happy. The late 80s/early 90s rock infused arrangement at the center of ‘I’m Free’ continues to keep the album’s musical energy flowing as well as its lyrical energy. Those combined energies keep flowing up until the album’s midpoint, ‘Hard Reality,’ the previously noted semi-acoustic contemplative piece. Once the band is done giving audiences break here, things gradually pick back up right to the album’s end, eventually leaving listeners feeling fulfilled both musically and lyrically. In looking back at the balance of energies throughout, listeners will note for themselves just how much time and effort was obviously put into sequencing. In doing so, they will agree that such time and effort paid off, as it resulted in an album that is expertly balanced from start to finish both musically and lyrically. The result is an album that will easily appeal, once more, to any fan of rock from the 90s and early 2000s.
One Gun Shy’s new forthcoming album Eye of the Storm is an album that fans of 90s and early 2000s rock will agree is cocked, locked and rocks. Yes, that awful pun was fully intended. Those fans will agree as to its strength in part due to its musical arrangements which not only cross the years but also genres. From the mainstream sounds of Theory of a Deadman, Shinedown and others to the more underground sound of Prong and others, this band brings plenty of variety throughout the album’s 45-minute run. The album’s lyrical themes don’t stick to the standard personal relationship fare, either. There are themes seemingly of personal insight and other items included among those more standard fare. The thought and time spent arranging those elements together into the body that is EOTS means each gets the attention it deserves, and in turn keeps listeners engaged and entertained from start to end. That insured engagement and entertainment, going full circle will lead listeners to have full appreciation for this album, agreeing once more, that it is another strong effort from One Gun Shy. More information on Eye of the Storm is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:
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