10 Years Return To Their Dark Roots In "(how to live) AS GHOSTS"

10 Years has been a band that stayed just under the surface of super stardom for years, settling in a nice place, bubbling just below. Their music has always been big, but 10 Years return to their dark roots in (how to live) AS GHOSTS, their newest record that defines "huge."

(how to live) AS GHOSTS wastes no time to get to the meat. 'The Messenger' opens the record with an epic intro to bring the album to a rushing start. The vocals are dark and the melodies captivating, the choruses giant and the verses tantalizing as the guitars carry to the song forward. The wave of energy carries through in single 'Novacaine,' its punchy intro giving way to a badass riff. The verses have an instrumental that feels like a more energized Red Hot Chili Peppers, though when the chorus kicks in, you can't help but jam out. Many of the songs with a dark and demanding riff add to the album's overall immensity, such as 'Vampires' with dark ferocity and lovely verses. It's a never-ending onslaught.

10 Years has much more depth than just constantly hitting you with riffs. Every song on (how to live) AS GHOSTS has layers of complexity to them. The album does begin pretty straightforward, anthems like 'Burnout' with its awesome chorus and 'Catacombs' with its brilliant melodies adding some accessibility earlier on in the album. As it progresses, the record becomes far more intelligent. 'Ghosts' has an awesome instrumental that builds up and becomes grander as it goes, the lyrics haunting and really hitting you hard, especially the curious "you're running through the emotions of the emotionless." Jesse Hasek doesn't play around on any front - his lyrical and melodic work on nearly every track is brilliant. His vocals shine on the lovely verses of 'Phantoms' and the gorgeous, restrained 'Halos.' 10 Years isn't afraid to experiment a bit, either: the contrasting folky acoustics and mathy electrics of 'Lucky You' introduce the song on a gentle note before exploding back into the album's signature anthemic vibe. Closing track 'Insomnia' is dark and oppressive, its atmosphere immense as it drives the album out with a cavernous sound.

10 Years return to their dark roots in (how to live) AS GHOSTS, their immense new album that sees them take the best of the heaviness from past records and their anthemic presence they began to adopt in more recent efforts. The band feels fully realized and connected with themselves in this record, beautiful poetic lyrics and unforgettable instrumentals capturing you until the very end.

Favorite Tracks: Ghosts, Lucky You, Insomnia, Vampires

Least Favorite Track: Catacombs

Rating: 95 / 100

Stream or buy (how to live) AS GHOSTS on Apple Music: