Album Review: Tonight Alive – “Underworld”

We got a chance to review the latest album, Underworld, from the Australian rock band Tonight Alive, and trust us when we say this album surpasses any expectations from the current buzz about the upcoming release. The album is coming out this Friday, January 12th, which you can pre-order here if you haven’t already.

This is the band’s latest album since the 2016 release Limitless. In support of the upcoming album, Tonight Alive have announced a co-headliner tour with Silverstein called the “Get Free Tour,” which starts on January 19th; you can purchase tickets for the upcoming tour here.

TA Promo Photo (Neal Walters).jpg
(Photo Credit: Neal Walters)

The first track off of the album is titled “Book of Love.” Instantly when the song began, I got several Limitless vibes. Instrumentally, the song is an electronic-rock mix of a steady drum pattern and backing guitar riffs, giving a “punk” style to the song, complimenting McDougall’s vocals ranging from regular singing to high notes.

“Temple” is next, which was the first single that fans heard off of the album. It was originally released in October 2017. The song starts out with a strong drum and guitar instrumental and deeper vocals by McDougall, with an aggressive/pop-rock attitude throughout. The song’s message all in all is to respect yourself and your body, and to take care of yourself, as the lyrics speak of McDougall’s struggle with mental health issues.

“Disappear” follows, which is one of my personal favorites off of the album. The song which features guest vocals from Lynn Gunn of PVRIS; was the third single off of the album to be released on January 4th. The song lyrically is deep to me, as well as the band I think. With the lyric “Big dreams and no one wants them,” it’s possible the line is related to the band’s struggle with switching labels and finding their true sound and being able to express their creative side fully.

”Crack My Heart” which is halfway through the album, was originally released in December 2017. This song reminded me of the band’s instrumental style in their 2013 album The Other Side, while continuing the lyrical aspect of Limitless. Lyrically, McDougall sings about spirituality, seeming some sort of God and a plan for her life and expanding her mind to other possibilities.

The album continued to impress me as it progressed, from Jenna’s high notes in “Just For Now,” to the message of not fearing what’s ahead in “Waiting For the End,” not to mention the beautiful piano-melody instrumental in “Looking for Heaven” and what no one would have saw coming, the title track “Underworld” featuring Corey Taylor from Slipknot.

Overall, the album is pretty solid as a whole; while it continues the appearance of Limitless it is entirely a new era for Tonight Alive. With the departure of guitarist Whakaio Taahi and the change of labels from Fearless Records to Hopeless Records, I believe Tonight Alive have finally found their home for their sound and will continue to prosper in the future.

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