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Victory Records

1) Waiting Four Years
2) Wish I Could Forget You
3) Friends In Fallriver
4) Summers Stellar Gaze
5) My Consolation
6) Forever and a Day
7) Red Light Pledge
8) Dawn Of The Fall
9) Wish I Could Forget You
10) Bleeds No More
11) Last Days Of Summer
12) Waiting Four Years
13) My Heroine (Acoustic)
14) Call It Karma (Acoustic)
15) Discovering The Waterfront (Live)
16) Defend You (Live)
17) Bleeds No More (Live)
18) Smile in Your Sleep (A Crude Mechanical Remix)
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Band Website
        I had heard of Silverstein a couple times from my friends and had listened to a few of their songs before, but their new album 18 Candles: The Early Years didn't live up to my expectations.
The Early Years is a combination of the band's first two EP's and also features acoustic songs as well as live recordings. A few new songs are also scattered throughout the 18-track album.
         Despite the fact that I saw that the new album repeated two songs twice and had many of the band's old songs, Silverstein, headed by vocalist Shane Told, showed its potential to create amazing, smooth guitar riffs and catchy lyrics in the first two tracks. The first track on the album, "Waiting Four Years," completely caught my attention with the clean riff slowly leading into the song. When the vocals started, I thought Told's voice was not going to impress me one bit, but as soon as the slow intro ended, Told was able to make use of his talent.
         After listening to the first song, I wanted to just repeat it for the intro, but track two brought the same type of slow, clean riff at the beginning as well. The only difference between "Wish I Could Forget You" and the first track was that Told's vocals weren't as strong in the former.
         The next few tracks didn't impress me at all. It was obvious that the band put the songs in order from best to worst from tracks one to five. "Friends in Fall River," which sits at track three, was a decent attempt by Silverstein to make a punk song somewhat like MxPx or San Jose band My New Life. But frankly, it didn't work.
         Further in the album, the first two tracks "Waiting Four Years" and "Wish I Could Forget You" are repeated in different versions. Personally, I think it's the worst thing to do to repeat a song in an album; if I wanted to listen to the song again, I'd just press "repeat."
         Then, in "Bleeds No More," the screams are finally brought out. The screaming is actually pretty good. The only thing that I find strange is how much deeper Told's voice gets when he screams compared to his normal singing voice.
         Tracks 13 and 14 bring out another side to Silverstein. The band placed in two acoustic songs that completely impressed me. Shane Told's vocals really come out in the acoustic tracks as well as guitarists Neil Boshart and Josh Bradford's talents in making soothing riffs.
         Despite the album's shaky middle,
18 Candles: The Early Years finally brought itself together with the last several songs? well, that is until the sad attempt to make the band's popular song "Smile In Your Sleep" into a techno remix to finish off the album.
         Let me break the album down. The first two tracks give a great leap for what becomes a disappointing album. True, there are several amazing songs in
18 Candles: The Early Years, including "My Heroine," "Call It Karma," and "Waiting Four Years"; but the album has no consistency at all. A couple of songs can't carry an entire album, especially one with 18 tracks.
         So simply, if you're a die-hard Silverstein fan or are willing to pay 13 bucks for just a couple of good songs, I say buy the album. Otherwise, ask your parents for the money and just pocket it.
K.H. '06