It has been three years since we have had an original studio record from post-hardcore veterans Emery with that last being the concept record ‘You Were Never Alone’. Since that record, Emery has had acoustic tours and live acoustic releases from said tours, an 8-bit rendition of fan favorite ‘The Question’, and a reimagined record taking on classic Emery songs in a new way. Also noting that members Toby Morell and Matt Carter released a record under their other band simply dubbed Matt & Toby and bassist Devin Shelton has released a solo record himself as well. This brings us to late 2018 and the new record ‘Eve’ due out November 9th.
A Butt Is Worth A Thousand Words
Much like their former Tooth & Nail labelmates earlier this year dropping an f-bomb on a new song, I’m sure everyone can figure that one out, Emery has received their own backlash about this record, mainly about the artwork for ‘Eve’. The image, as you can see, features a woman with her head covered and nude in the woods with her butt exposed. Nevermind (pun intended) a kid’s bottom area is exposed on one of the most iconic rock records ever these same people probably listen to, a butt seems to be enough to cause people to lose their shit (again pun intended).
Emo Is Not A Phase, Mom
There is one thing that is captured on this record that Emery has always done so well, but this time around it’s different. While Emery is known for their thrashy heavy parts and at times songs, this record doesn’t have many of those moments and for someone who’s favorite Emery songs are those, this is fine by me and really not missed as much as one would assume. What they do well here is project the classic emo sound from the early/ mid-00s while keeping up with their brand of post-hardcore which involves vocal harmonies and trade-offs between Morell and Shelton, the opening to ‘Shame’ shows this perfectly and the album closer ‘Sins Of Every Father’. Shelton also takes front and center seemingly more on this record than in the past delivering powerful performances leaving you full of emotion such as in ‘Safe’ which was written in honor of his mother along with fellow member’s Matt Carter.
Matt Carter’s guitar work is clean and clear throughout this record (‘Fear Yourself’/’Safe’) yet he pulls off an aggressive sound when it is called for and drummer Dave Powell pushes through and gives his best performance to date in his time with Emery such as on ‘Young Boy’s Dream’/’People Always Ask…’, which is one of my personal favorites. It also showcases classic Emery with Morell’s poetic storytelling and reminiscing. The screaming is more complementary and situational based this time around rather than a selling point. ‘People Always Ask…’ again is a great example of this along with ‘Safe’ as it builds and builds into a strong emotional moment in the song as well as ‘See You On The Other Side’.
A Christian Band Says ‘Gay Is Ok’
As mentioned in a previous article, the band is also giving some fans another reason to grumble and complain with the story of a gay man years before it ever became culturally accepted to be open. As stated in the article, the story of the song and the song itself premiered on a BadChristian Podcast episode in which Morrell begins to tell a story about seeing an older gay man and thinking about his upbringing before America was ok with people being openly gay. He talks about wondering if he ever found love and happiness because of the times back then or how his life was keeping that a secret so he wrote a song from his perspective on how it may have been for that man growing up.
The title we are told comes from a joke or experiment Emery did in 2007 touring with Switchfoot in which they wrote this now title on their van to see how others would react, being both Switchfoot and Emery are Christian bands. We find out it did enough for the tour manager at the time for Switchfoot to ask them to take it off.
Summary + Pre-Order
Overall ‘Eve’ is a beautiful record that pushes it’s way to being in the top three for me and their discography. The work on this record was well worth the wait and Number One Gun’s Chris Keene is amazing with the production of this album. We rate this record a 8.5/10.