Album Review :
The Wedding - Polarity

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Artist: The Wedding
Album: Polarity
Label: Brave New World Records
Release Date: April 17, 2007
Review by: Eric Pettersson

Tracklist:
1. The Call
2. Say Your Prayers
3. I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead
4. Staring at the Light
5. This One’s for You
6. I-540
7. It’s Time to Rock (OK?)
8. Rebound
9. Schizophrenia
10. The Last Stand (Wake the Regiment 2)
11. Misery Loves Company
12. Southside
13. Revelation
14. Fireworks

About two years ago I went to a small church show to see Kids in the Way play, and one of the opening acts happened to be a band called The Wedding. I and my concert buddy were instantly in love and both bought t-shirts. The Wedding put on a highly impressive and energetic show, and their CD (which I also purchased that night) was creative and original, especially for a pop punk band. Since then, I’ve recently been longing for some new material from The Wedding, and what they delivered, I was never expecting.

Their early work sounded much like Fall Out Boy, circa 2003, only with a slightly different and unique voice behind the microphone. Some songs on Polarity continue with this melodic, catchy, and upbeat sound (“Staring at the Light,” “Rebound”), but many of the tracks see The Wedding branching out into previously unexplored territory. “This One’s for You” increases the pop sensibility even more by added a bright piano line to the melody. As far as the few screaming parts on the first record, The Wedding has given up the typical “add-a-little-bit-of-hardcore-vocals-to-pop-punk-to-give-it-a-pseudo-hard-sound” approach and taking their harder edge to a whole new level. “It’s Time to Rock (OK?)” is basically an all-out southern rock song, with a guest scream on the bridge (provided by Justin Driggers of The Goodnight Fight) that could easily compete with Dallas Taylor of Maylene and the Sons of Disaster (although I realize that to some people this isn’t saying much). “Say Your Prayers” also sees more edge added to the energy while singing about the need for sincerity in loving and following God. Looking to the ballads, “I-540” is a piano led break-into-a-full-band-at-the-end crooner which sings about homesickness while “Revelation” is even mellower with the addition of strings. Other songs a spiced-up with horns (anyone recognize the name Dan Spencer?), bagpipes (thanks to Flatfoot56’s Josh Robieson), or a fiddle.

If there’s one word that summarizes Polarity in contrast to the last album, it’s “deliberate.” More time and effort was put into each song, giving the record more variety and an overall feel that is a lot more involved. Making a wise decision, The Wedding again went with Mark Lee Townsend to produce Polarity, and his work seems to only be improving as well. These fourteen songs offer a new direction with original ideas and very smart arrangements. Those who dismissed The Wedding before will find it harder to do so this time around. Best of all, there seems to be something for everyone, from fans of Motion City Soundtrack or Cartel to fans of Chasing Victory or Underoath. Added to Deas Vail’s debut, this puts the newly founded Brave New World Records at a two for two win record.

8/10

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