Of Mice And Men are back at it again with their highly anticipated album ‘Cold World’, which is the follow up from the highly successful album ‘Restoring Force’. For a while now Of Mice And Men have been trying to branch out their sound to attract new fans but also still please their old fans as they did for Restoring Force but sadly with this new album it is a bit hit and miss.
The opening track of the new record is ‘Game of War’. This track is a strange one to start off with as it has a much of a calmer feel which has been created with a simple blend of simplistic keys , soothing vocals , repetitive guitar lines and stumbling snare build ups. The use of the ambient song structure for this track leaves the listener craving for heavy hitting riffs and harder breakdowns…
The follow up track does exactly this, ‘The Lie’, has a slight metal feel and is more up beat compared to the opening track, this track shows Of Mice And Men’s old roots that first shot them to fame with their signature sound. Even though it has those hard hitting beats and crunchy guitar riffs, it is missing that extra push to make it a memorable song.
The next track ‘Real’ continues to show the confusion between genres for this album. The motive Of Mice And Men was going for, for this track was radio friendly-ness and generally this track lacks that little oomph to keep listeners wanting more and to generally enjoy the song. Sadly this song generally seems like a throwaway song , a song that wasn’t really meant to be and leaves listeners with a sinking feeling.
However some of the tracks on this album do show the confident, stronger and clearer approach that they wanted to show but unfortunately this doesn’t happen often enough. A standout track is ‘Like a Ghost’, it has the hardest guitar riffs on the album, a fast hitting tempo, amazing vocals and screaming that hits more at home for Of Mice And Men and has that ‘Restoring Force’ feel to it.
The last two tracks ‘Away’ and ‘Transfigured’ really show that Of Mice And Men are capable of successfully moving to a more radio-friendly rock and leaving their metalcore roots, both track serving as a bright spark
The huge problem with Cold World is that basically most of the songs off this album are heavily influenced by other bands which makes some of the songs lack originality and are soul-less. That great style that Of Mice And Men have worked so hard to preserve and have become known for is not present. Many genres and influences have been thrown into the melting pot but overall there is varying success.
This doesn’t mean the whole album should be written off as a failure as fundamentally it’s an okay album. There are a few songs on the album which are pretty great in fact but when you look at Cold World as an entire album compared to the bands older work, this album really falls flat and it’s quite a disappointment. The whole album seems like they are suffering from an identity crisis of what type of sound they want to be.
Catch Of Mice And Men in October on their tour with supports of Crown the Empire and Hands Like Houses:
30 – BIRMINGHAM Academy
01 – MANCHESTER Apollo
03 – NOTTINGHAM Rock City
04 – NEWCASTLE Academy
05 – GLASGOW Academy
07 – LONDON Forum
08 – PORTSMOUTH Pyramids
09 – CARDIFF Great Hall