Silverstein - I Am Alive In Everything I Touch (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


I Am Alive In Everything I Touch (2015)

Rise Records

"Giving Up" and "Smashed Into Pieces" were big parts of my high-school Victory Records-era alongside Thursday, Hawthorne Heights and Taking Back Sunday. Now, it's safe to say when it comes to bands like Silverstein, whatever you may have liked about them are almost certain to be left back a decade ago. But if you're nostalgic and open-minded, maybe these novelty items could muster just enough magic to offer you something more than just a trip down memory lane. I Am Alive In Everything I Touch is one of those albums as it nods to the past but still charts a new way forward as the band adapts to a new breed of audience and acknowledges that to survive, they'll have to leave fans like me behind.

Silverstein are definitely more Rise-core in terms of sound than Victory now. It's apparent in the production and arrangement. The musical structure, like I mentioned above, fits with so many of their roster-mates. There are less intricate guitar solos, sacrificed for a more hardcore approach to things, which treads off a heavier style of delivery as opposed to the old screamo days. These days, of course, balanced the grittier and dirtier screams of the band with Shane Told's cleaner vocals much better. But that doesn't diminish what Silverstein do here. "A Midwestern State Of Emergency" is a catchy in-between of modern day Dance Gavin Dance and Pierce The Veil which flows into "Face Of The Earth" -- a la the nu-metal/synth era of AFI. It shows a lot of experimentation on the band's behalf and is no surprise given this record is a concept album. It tells the band's story in four chapters split in different territories as they ponder life away from home. Brave and ambitious to say the least.

You appreciate their gung-ho measures a bit more on "Heaven, Hell and Purgatory" which is a solid hardcore effort and one which shows how well they box without gloves. Is there a mainstream sensibility still floating around though? Cut to "Milestone" to find the answer to that. It's definitely one for loyalists as Told mixes a radio-friendly style with aggressive bits and pieces, topped off by his ever-poetic lyrics. He's on his game as usual and definitely raises the production of the album with his versatility on the mic. Some tracks fall short and come off bland but when Silverstein make a splash, it definitely sticks. As the acoustic closer in "Toronto (unabridged)" speaks on making it back home after arduous times on the road, you're left contemplating a lot of things.

Family. Love. And yes, the concept of home and the heart. If anything, Silverstein will continue to be a guilty pleasure of mine. I Am Alive In Everything I Touch has a lot of themes that resonate with me and holds true to how I feel about the majority of their work, no matter how diverted their sound gets.