Seaway - Colour Blind (Cover Artwork)


Colour Blind (2015)

Pure noise Records

Seaway is flying under the radar. They’re one of a few, young bands that can be aggressively punkish one second, yet bubbly and poppy the next. They’re versatile, relatable and have solid, core audience. Yet, they’ve been unable to create the buzz of, say, a Neck Deep or Knuckle Puck. Which is why Colour Blind is such an important record for the Canadian five-piece. Often times, a good sophomore album leads to a band’s break through. And this is a band that deserves a break through.

“Slam” is an appropriate first song. A couple light chords blend with the vocals of lead singer Patrick Carleton. Soon after, the pleasantly gruff croon of Ryan Locke joins the tune, and off the song goes with a driving tempo that is carried out to the finish. The band hits a home run with its second track- and first single- “Best Mistake.” It features a powerful chorus, driving snare beat while being one of the more heavily produced tracks on the album. Catchy and creative, the song is tightly wrapped in just over three minutes. It’s perfect for radio, if this kind of music were still played on the radio.

“Trick” moves quickly and is one of the more poppier songs on the album. Colour Blind gains momentum with “Freak,” which features a bouncy first verse and nice blend of both Carleton and Locke. The album’s most well rounded tune might be its fifth song “Still Weird.” The track is smooth, well produced and a lyrical high for Seaway. Introspective lines like “I started singing when I understood that I was different from the boys and girls, when life was so simple and we banged our heads to the music on TV,” stand out.

If this album has a ballad, it would be “Stubborn Love.” Locke’s vocals really help this track stand out. The album reaches its back half with song seven, “Big Deal.” The first verse is vintage Seaway; little base, a simple snare beat and lively vocals. It’s Carelton’s turn to shine in this song. “Airhead” is a bit of a changeup from the rest of the album. Like the mashed potatoes on your Thanksgiving meal plate, it’s a little heavier than the rest of the album. But rather then slowing Colour Blind down, it adds flavor and a nice change of pace.

“Growing Stale” is anything but. It’s anthem-like chorus and multiple references to past Seaway tunes allow it to star on the album’s back half. Colour Blind’s last three songs feel like filler. There isn’t much new in “The Day She Left.” “Turn Me Away” closes strong, but its first two minutes are muddled. And it just seems like “Goon” misses the mark altogether.

Still, a majority of the album is very solid. Seaway takes plenty of chances, and the versatility of Colour Blind’s first half is commendable. It’s not short on stand out tracks with “Best Mistake,” “Freak” and “Still Weird” being my favorites. The production is smooth. Listeners will enjoy multiple reverbs and other tricks not present on past Seaway albums. But there is a sense of rawness, present on Seaway hits, like “Shy Guy” and “Sabrina the Teenage Bitch,” that’s missing.

Taking a broad look at the album, Colour Blind step forward for the band. It’s their transition from Buddha to Dude Ranch; Nothing Gold Can Stay to Sticks and Stones. Colour Blind is the best thing Seaway has put together, and sets the bar for future records.