Off With Their Heads frontman Ryan Young has been devoting a lot of his time to mental health awareness since the band’s last full-length album, 2013’s ‘Home’.
After suffering a nervous breakdown, he started a podcast, Anxious And Angry, which focuses on mental health and well-being. Now, his band is back in full musical swing with their fourth LP, ‘Be Good’.
“I should have seen this from the start / I should have always been on my own / Now it’s perfectly clear / I never should have stayed here / I should have just disappeared” is the mood that the album opens on with ‘Disappear’. The track feels brutally honest, and doesn’t hold back on letting the emotions flow.
‘No Love’ brings a hell-for-leather energy. The vocals are catastrophically hard-hitting while Kyle Manning beats the life out of his drums, as if they owe him money. A similar energy is felt on ‘Let It All’, and both songs exemplify an unapologetic assault of fast-paced punk rock.
‘Death’ ends the album with a retrospective feel. Despite the fact that it’s almost entirely instrumental, you can feel that it carries the story of the rest of the album, with the anguished vocals and slow yet heavy instrumental. The fact that it fades out at the end, rather than coming to a definite stop also signals ahead to what might be coming in the future.
When there’s a long gap between studio albums, especially six years, there’s always the question of whether or not it was worth the wait. In this case, the answer is yes. With ‘Be Good’, Off With Their Heads prove that they’re not going to let mental health stand in the way of their music, and they’re still going to be hitting hard for a long time to come.
20/All things Scottish Rock/Emo/Metal