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Sick Puppies, ‘Connect’ – Album Review

Sick Puppies Connect
Capitol Records

Following the 2011 acoustic EP ‘Polar Opposite,’ Sick Puppies return with their latest full-length album ‘Connect.’ On the new disc, the band’s hard rock roots can definitely be heard, but the effort also features some alt-rock and pop sensibilities.

First garnering U.S. attention with the 2006 single ‘All The Same,’ Sick Puppies upped the ante with their 2009 album ‘Tri-Polar.’ It spawned four hit singles: ‘You’re Going Down,’ ‘Odd One,’ ‘Maybe’ and ‘Riptide.’

‘Connect’ boasts some very solid songs, including the single ‘There’s No Going Back,’ an extremely catchy track with gang background vocals. The opener ‘Die To Save You’ is a moody rocker that’s also memorable.

After a trio of strong tracks to begin the album, the band gets political in ‘Gunfight,’ but the tune’s CNN-inspired lyrics are a bit cringeworthy. The album rebounds with the acoustic based ‘Telling Lies,’ a Middle Eastern flavored tune with excellent backing vocals from bassist Emma Anzai. Shimon Moore does a fine job on his own, but Anzai adds depth and texture to the proceedings.

The middle of the album is filled with some mellower, poppy acoustic based tracks, and while there are some catchy parts, they may turn off fans of hard rock. However, there are plenty of memorable moments elsewhere, and several more radio-friendly hits.

Just as they started the album on a high note, Sick Puppies end ‘Connect’ the same way. The last three tracks are good ones, including the raucous ‘The Trick the Devil Did,’ the potential chart-topper ‘Healing Now’ and closer ‘Under a Very Black Sky,’ which puts Anzai’s vocals front and center.

For Sick Puppies, ‘Connect’ should continue the band’s streak of hit singles. The album is not a perfect one by any means, but definitely features some memorable tunes that are sure to connect (for lack of a better word) with their fans.

 

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