The Classic Crime - Albatross (Cover Artwork)

The Classic Crime

Albatross (2006)

Tooth & Nail

The Classic Crime's Tooth & Nail debut, Albatross could easily launch the band to the front of the scene. Not only is their album a solid mix of catchy rock songs with some pop-punk influence, but Matt MacDonald manages to find a vocal approach in between fan favorites Patrick Stump and Brendon Urie. And while their catchy rock isn't exactly the most creative style on the market, for the most part, they make it work.

Albatross is loaded with rock-driven verses that give way for pop-punk choruses that display strong and emotional vocals. On tracks like "The Coldest Heart" and "All the Memories," you'd swear you were listening to a matured Panic! at the Disco, minus the keys. The former has one of the catchiest choruses heard in a long time, easily. "The Fight" starts with a kick drum intro that sounds completely ripped off from Fall Out Boy's "Dance, Dance." However, the song manages to handle itself better with a strong rock approach and a sweeping solo at the end, which is icing on the cake compared to MacDonald's vocals.

While at first some of the slower songs, like "Who Needs Air," seem to lack what made the faster songs above par, it allows the lyrics and vocal range to shine; "I'm drowning, but I don't care, 'cause when you got what I got, who needs air?" Sure, they're not the best lyrics ever, but it's something easily relatable and not completely bad, especially compared to the typical fare of the genre.

The Classic Crime's Albatross is a fine effort by a young band that isn't ashamed to wear their influences on their sleeves. However, unlike the bands they are influenced by, the Classic Crime manage to craft a mature album that is as smart as it is catchy.

So someone turn up the volume and let's have a party.