The Used – Artwork
In their newest release, Artwork, The Used get a chance to show their fans just what has kept them in the studio for the past year and a half. After numerous videos and photos chronicling their antics, a tease at the Bamboozle Festival in May 2009 was where they played ‘Blood On My Hands’ for the first time in front of an audience. It was just a short wait until August 31st, 2009, the official release date. The album has a pleasing progression and digression played affettuoso
(with feeling); it starts with ‘Blood On My Hands’, the only song on the album with an official music video, and slowly moves towards a slower tempo only to pick back up again. One of the more mellow songs, ‘Kissing You Goodbye’, has melodic piano accompaniment along with a heavy, rock-anthem riffs at the chorus, a pleasing mix when done right. Most of the songs are heavy, this being proven by Jepha, the bassist’s, post on the band’s Twitter after a show. (“I broke a bass string during the Best Of Me! Crazy! I never break strings. Must have been a good show then eh.”) In most projects, The Used like to mix it up by fearlessly adding trumpet (‘Back Of Your Mouth‘), safari-esque drum beats (‘Just A Little‘), and various guitar sound effects; this album is no exception. Now, don’t think this album is all smiles and long-lost love songs; while they seamlessly mix instruments and effects, they do the same with a healthy dose of controversy. ‘On The Cross’ starts off (and ends) with, what seems to be, a white supremacist speaking to a large crowd. The song continues with a belting chorus of “So pray then / If it makes you feel safe / All I can say / Is we go our own way”. The Used’s new album, Artwork, is for anyone looking for well-tracked, well-mixed, meaningful, and diverse songs.