Sic Waiting is a band I've heard of a few times, but never really did anything about it...until today. They're a 4-piece punk band from Southern California and they've been played for a decade now, and that's like 50 years in band years. You can stream their album Anchor's Away on Amp Magazine if you want to, and I think you want to. So do it.
The first thing I noticed about Anchor's Astray is that they remind me of The Wonder Years, and I love the Wonder Years. The production quality might be a bit higher than what I'm used to, but that's because they put a shitload of effort into recording this album. The metal influences is very obvious when listening to this album, and it's immediately apparent in the second track "Consumers to the Grave". This band really focuses on technicality, and their effort pays off; Consumers was one of my favorite songs pretty early on in listening. The third track "Sunset on the Moon" reminds me a lot of the American Idiot album by Green Day...other than the guitar being better than I've heard Billie Joe manage. Actually, it kind of seems more like Bad Religion as the song progresses.
Way more technicality awaits us with the track "Bleeding". I believe the owed respect for the guitar work in these tracks goes to guitarist Dylan. The bass really shines through in this track as well; it's all pretty impressive the whole time. The metal influence is really present throughout most of this album. It's not my style, but I've never excluded something just for that. I listen to plenty of stuff that isn't what I'd normally find myself becoming attached to.
While I think is album is pretty awesome, it's nothing we haven't heard before. It sounds like bands you probably listen to, really. There are a lot of influences pulled together for Anchor's Astray, and the band definitely makes it all work out really well. I think Jared has a great singing voice; I would call it different, but not really unique. It's not typically the vocals heard with some of the instrumentals, but it meshes really well. It fits perfectly with the acoustic track "These Old Shoes" midway through the album. What's awesome about that song is that it goes into "Okay, I Lied" which is just an awesome contrast from a nice little acoustic song to a speedy, hardcore influenced yellfest. Okay I Lied is another of my favorites on the album.
"Living Disaster" is another song that compliments the guitar work very well. After that you have "Black Label" which is another song for Jared's vocals to shine through on. The entire album is full of good songs, from start to finish, and it doesn't leave too much for me to criticize in a way that's relatable to everyone, but rather only in my own weird preferences. I know some people like to hear a polished album, but I really like an album that better reflects what seeing them live would be like. It feels like this album was produced out the ass (as in a lot of production, not like somebody used their ass to produce it), and that may be something a lot of people like, but it's not something I really care for as much.
Anchor's astray overall feels like the first album, even though I know they've had more stuff released. I feel like they finalized the lineup they need to start writing good songs, and we can probably expect to hear the results of this with each future release. This album is good, but it's not going to turn many heads or leave much of a mark on the scene. Sic Waiting, however, will most likely turn many a head, and leave quite a mark. So pay attention to them, because what else are you going to get out of Southern California? Not much, other than like 10 dollar ska shows of bands you've never heard of.