Album Review :
Atombender - Wait of the World

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Artist: Atombender
Album: Wait of the World
Label: n/a
Release: 5/8/12
Reviewer: Brody B

  1. Carpet Hearts
  2. Amputations
  3. Back to the Basics
  4. US Hwy 30
  5. Sinkhole
  6. Night Guard
  7. Great Lakes
  8. Curse My Metal Body
  9. Stick to the Script
  10. Weight & Sea
  11. Ad Astra per Aspera

Do you like pop punk? How about tons of dancy and fun synthesizers? How do you feel about of lots horns? Well, what if I told you there was a band who offered all of that in one interesting and unique package? Do I have your attention? Good. Ames, Iowa’s very own Atombender is a young band that deserves your full and undivided attention.

Wait of the World starts out with “Carpet Hearts”, the lead single the band released recently. This song sets the tone perfectly for the album, very fun and poppy with an infectious chorus that will be stuck in your head upon first listen. The synths are also introduced very early on and are there for the long haul as they stay throughout the duration of the album. Believe me, if you like this song, you will love Wait of the World  as  a whole seeing as it follows a similar formula for the length of the album. Next up is my person favorite of the record, “Amputations”. The passion in this song of forgiveness is apparent during the chorus as vocalists proclaim, “a cleansing fire, a cleansing rain/we all need to start over again/ without a past, but with an amputation/ a cleansing fire, a cleansing flood/ to wash both of my hands of your blood/ I need to see what forgiveness really means”. The bridge of the song also features a great horn and synth section with very fitting gang harmonizing. “Night Guard” is the first song where things really slow down for the first time. Beginning with nothing but piano and somber vocals, the sound gains a fullness as rhythmic pounding drums and horns come in to compliment the mood. The song continues to build until the anthemic climax featuring an eclectic blend of layered vocals. “Stick to the Script” features some of my favorite instrumentation on the album, particularly the intro, as the synths, horns, and traditional instruments all come to together harmoniously to create an awesome backdrop of sounds. “Ad Astra per Aspera” is quite the closer for a great album. It’s a fairly straightforward song until it nears the conclusion as with spine tingling chanting of, “Take us by the hand and lead us home we were once broken, You made us whole” amidst an amplitude of incredible instrumentation as each member hits their mark perfectly.

Although there are so many positive things about the record, I did have a few annoyances. There were a few instances where I found all the instruments playing together to be a bit too much to process at once. I’m not sure if it is something that could be changed with production to put the instruments at different levels so they sounded a bit less muddy of if perhaps different guitar or keyboard tones would have helped them stand out a little better. Another minor detail I thought could have been improved on was a lack of really any synthesizer variation as far as tones. While the sound is extremely fun and catchy, I felt they could have experimented a little bit more with the synthesizer sounds to add a few more stand out keyboard moments.

Overall: Atombender is a band with massive potential! Wait of the World is a unique record packed with heartfelt pop punk tunes from a young group with a bright future ahead of them. I look forward to seeing this band grow and mature while still keeping their fun and one of a kind sound.

RIYL: It’s hard to pigeonhole these guys, but if you like pop punk, music with horns, or poppy synths, check these guys out.