Album: Attention Attention
Release Date: May 4, 2018
Standout Tracks: “Attention Attention,” “Creatures,” “Get Up,” “Special,” “The Human Radio,” and “Brilliant”
As if it’s not obvious from the above list of songs I’ve labeled as standouts, I really enjoyed Shinedown’s Attention Attention. The record’s first actual track is “Devil,” which is an immediate one-two punch of heavy riffs and Brent Smith’s strong vocals. This was not too different from prior Shinedown singles and gave me no warning for what was to come.
“Black Soul” hits the ground running. While undoubtedly aggressive, the song grabs the listener and pulls us along for the ride. I was captivated from the keyboard riff that introduced this track, all the way through the fast-paced, the melodic, the raw and unfiltered, the heartfelt, and Brent’s calmly stated “Until next time” at the conclusion of the album.
With Attention Attention, Shinedown touches on the anthemic (“Attention Attention”), the hard and angry (“Kill Your Conscience,” “Pyro”), and their own unique brand of balladry (“Get Up,” “Special”). The record spans the range of human emotion, taking its audience high and low.
Brent Smith stated in interviews that Attention Attention was for the fans, and the sentiment is clearly there. It’s a whirlwind journey from darkness to light that is simultaneously enjoyable, encouraging, and a musical masterpiece.
I am clearly a sucker for the softer songs, and that’s why “Get Up” and “Special” tug at my heartstrings and claim positions one and two of my favorites from the album. However, I was also delighted by the head-bobbing funky bass and beat during the verses on “The Human Radio,” and the slow then blistering ride that is “Brilliant.”
From start to finish, there is nothing about Attention Attention that I did not like. I give this record 5/5 stars without any hesitation.