REVIEW: The Sheds – I’ll Be Fine

The Sheds I'll Be Fine

Artist: The Sheds
Album: I’ll Be Fine
Genre: Hardcore Ska-Punk
Label: Mediaskare Records

“I used to be cool, calm, and collected, now everything upsets me, leaves me empty,” sings out vocalist Mac Miller of The Sheds on the introductory title track of I’ll Be Fine. Just like that, the song sets just the right tone for what’s in store for listeners on the remaining nine tracks of the band’s debut full-length record. Truly, it’s been a long time coming for this young California band, since their 2012 EP, Self/Doubt, The Sheds have shown a strong influence from the 90s hardcore, ska and skate-punk sub-genres, but I’ll Be Fine showcases all of that in full force, with a little bit of an extra “oomph” added in for good taste.

One of the best things about The Sheds having such a diverse sound is that rather than hearing different genres amongst multiple tracks, different genres can be heard within the same song. Like an artist using all of the colors on their palette to paint a huge mural, guitarist Morgan Miller single-handedly combines so many playing techniques such as upstrokes, palm mutes, power chords and everything else in-between to make something that would surely please the masses.

After more than five listens to the album from cover to cover, it’s easy to say that all of these songs hold well on their own. The tracks stay on the faster side of things on the majority of the album while still including enough time changes to keep the overall flow from becoming stale and monotonous. Unlike the majority of ska music, the lyrics found on I’ll Be Fine come in a little deeper – when there’s anger shouted out (take for example, guest vocalist Chadwick Johnson’s screams on “Bad Things Are Bad”), you feel it, and when sadness is sung out on tracks like “Tunnel Vision,” it sinks down into your bones.

In my opinion, the main problem that keeps this album from becoming a 9/10 or better is the seemingly cheap work done from behind the soundboard. If there was a way to make the instruments stick out from one another in the mix and give the right “pop” to sound levels at key moments in songs, we’d have a winner. Then again, chances are that wouldn’t get in the way of things for most fans of fast, emotive, and dynamic 90s punk that can and will go all over the place musically – and lyrically – in under half an hour.

Rating: 8.5/10
Reviewed by: Adrian Garza (Follow on Twitter)

You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.