Rock album bound to fade away after initial hype

Story by Nick Erickson, Staff writer

music3 Doors Down is a band that everyone knows, even if they don’t know it. Their post-grunge hits swept the globe in the early-mid 2000s, topping the Billboard charts. From “The Better Life” to the present, the group has lost attention to other similar bands like Daughtry, but that didn’t deter them; their newest album is here, and it ventures into all-too familiar territory.

“Us and the Night” is as much of a 3 Doors Down record as one could get, but perhaps that is where it falls short. Will their latest effort help them break the “Kryptonite Band” stereotype? Likely not.

Opening the album with “The Broken,” the band fades in with a bright guitar melody, a simple yet powerful drum beat and the glossy singing of frontman Brad Arnold. A prominent synthesizer line carries throughout the choruses and adds a nice flare to the music. Clocking in at less than three minutes, this track is one of the highlights of the record, featuring strong one-liners that could go on the band’s merchandise. “Your heart is the only friend you have in this whole world,” Arnold sings over the first verse. As simple as it is catchy, this track shines.

Lead single from the album  “In the Dark” features Arnold singing of the risqué topic of having sex in the dark, hence the name. The song sounds like a slightly-up tempo rendition of the first track, with its similar chord progressions and vocal melodies. Despite this, the chorus’ main vocal hook of “she likes to do it in the dark” will plague listeners’ ears for at least a day or so, as hard rock seems to be formulated to do.

There is slight variety on this album. The chorus of “Living In Your Hell” is a basic rock chorus, but the pitch modulation in the last line catches ears and is actually creative. “Love Is A Lie” starts off with some interesting choices of power chords on the guitar and some strong singing of how Arnold was wronged by a girl, but after the intro, the track falls back into the album’s handful of clichés: lackluster but smooth vocals, basic guitar, bass lines and easy to follow drumming.

Closing the album is the most surprising track, “Fell from the Moon.” Unlike the other guitar-driven tracks on the record, this track starts and is carried mainly by a simplistic piano line. Drums, bass and faint guitar accompanies it shortly after. The key change halfway into the track, however, feels out of place and forced.

“Formulated” is the word to describe their album, in both positive and negative ways. Eight of the 11 tracks run almost the same length of three minutes and 50 seconds, give or take a few. The songs might be overly-saturated with the same structure, or the singing might sound the same by the end of the first track, but one thing is for sure: this album will sell copies because 3 Doors Down is well-known. 3 Doors Down might have already lived to their ultimate glory and hype in the 2000s, but “Us and the Night” will garnish some hefty record sales. They are likely to keep the attention span of millions for a short time, though it lacks the substance to really stand out among a large pool of rock bands. Here’s to the good old days, 3 Doors Down. 

that of the teenage-daughter Thomasin (Anya Taylor-Joy) who appears to be an innocent girl trapped in circumstances outside her control. She becomes the scapegoat for her religious family to blame all of the transpiring events going on around them.

As far as horror films go, “The Witch” is subpar at best. The flick has unnerving background music and menacingly, disconsolate scenery that help set the mood, but otherwise the rest is just a letdown.

Critics from sources such as, “Rolling Stone” and the “Washington Post” have given the film positive reviews for being “terrorizing” and “unique.” Nevertheless, just because this so-called “horror” picture is different from the other genre-related films that have been released lately, doesn’t make this particular movie exceptional, especially when compared to classic films, like “Halloween” or “The Shining.”

If the viewer wants to watch a film that has few disturbing moments and some respectable acting performances, then this is a good film to check out. However, if the viewer is expecting to be frightened or looking forward to seeing something truly spell-binding, regrettably the audience is in for a major disappoint