Album Review: You Me at Six – Night People

#aotd is Night People by You Me at Six. Night People is a natural progression towards the more Contemporary Alternative Rock direction You Me at Six had signalled on their previous two albums. What does it mean for a band to mature? The term is almost exclusively used as a positive, insinuating that a group has started making music that has the complexities and subtleties us adults crave and those darn kids don’t understand. Last year I praised Mayday Parade for shedding their teenybopper roots in favour of a grittier sound while simultaneously panning Tonight Alive for their dreadful stint in Sci-fi Alt. Rock. Unfortunately, YMAS’s latest effort shares a lot of ground with Tonight Alive’s 2016 abomination. Both albums are an attempt at maturity that comes off as contrived and bland as both bands refuse to stray too far from the sappy Alt. Rock blueprint. YMAS were never bastions of Rock creativity but songs like “Reckless” and “Stay with Me” achieved greatness through their youthful vigour and snide, occasionally bitchy lyricism. This self-aware energy has been traded in for monotonous stabs at Arena-Rock so limp that Chris Martin would turn away in embarrassment. For one, the production fails to carry any of these tracks to the grandiose heights they so meekly strive for. This in turn makes the barely sub-par songwriting and the completely uninspired performances all the more obvious. To his credit, Frontman Josh Franceschi sounds as good as ever even if his decent falsettos on “Make Your Move” are awkwardly interrupted by unwelcome guitar embellishments. The more restrained closer “Give” is as close to a tolerable Alt. Rock band YMAS come with Francheschi taking centre stage on the huge hook backed by soft guitars and keys. Night People is an utter failure and may very well be the death knell for YMAS, yet with the lack of effort shown over these tracks, I don’t think they’d mind at all. Rating: 1.7/5

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