Asylums’ sophomore release is an OK Brit rock record. It lacks any sort of innovation or originality to stand out from the crowd but fans of this genre will surely feel some nostalgia from this record. With influences from all across the brit rock genre such as Oasis, Ash, and Feeder. Ultimately however the lack of originality across the album does cause it to fall flat and become rather boring.
When the press release describes lead single When We Wake Up as a song that makes you want throw lager over your mates, you know that this album is part of the genre now being coined as “lad rock”. For this style of music the songs aren’t bad, however, for the most part they lack anything that makes them standout from this creatively stagnant genre. To stand out nowadays bands need to be releasing songs that stand up to the brilliant legacy of this genre.
There are some moments on this record which suggest that with a bit more experimenting a stand out release is possible. Most notable is the song Napalm Bubblegum. A punk song in truth. It hits harder than any song on this album. It has a snotty edge to it. An edge which can’t be heard anywhere else on this record. Napalm Bubblegum is comfortably the best song on this record. Another song which suggests a deviation from the basic blueprint from this record is Sexual Automation. The slow dreamy ballad opens with an electronic sample which subtly echoes throughout the song. While it still lacks the quality to put it up there with the best it does offer a nice change from the repetitive nature of this record.
On Alien Human Emotions, Asylums have followed a previously successful blueprint with nowhere near enough quality to create a stand out record. While die-hard fans of this genre may enjoy this record it will never replace nor compete with the best. All hints of innovation and individuality pass in a flash. It leaves you wondering how different this record could have sounded if more experimentation was carried out.