It's safe to say this record has been a long time coming. The Welsh emo/nu-matel/poprock band's third album 'Liberation Transmission' (roundly accepted as a thorough disappointment, given the quality of 2004's 'Start Something') was released back in 2006, and frontman Ian Watkins has been announcing to any audience who'd listen at every gig since, that their 4th record would be out in the coming year.
It starts promisingly with 'If It Wasn't For Hate We'd Be Dead By Now,' and kicks off properly with 'Dstryr/Dstryr', which sounds like it could fit easily into the band's 2000 debut 'Thefakesoundofprogress', albeit far more produced. It would appear Watkins has remembered how to scream like he used to. Or maybe not. First single from the new album 'It's Not The End Of The World (But I Can See It From Here)' goes back to the sound of 'Liberation Transmission,' despite being better than most of the tracks on that album. It's not bad, but it's not the direction they should be taking.
It's all very listenable, far too safe, but decent enough grand, stadium esque pop rock. With the exceptions of the frantic 'Next Stop Atro City,' catchy 'Streets Of Nowhere' and closer 'The Light That Burns Twice As Bright,' nothing really sticks out. It's all nice verses, jumpy guitar riffs and crashing choruses. Good for sing-alongs and throwing yourself around to, which is half the point I suppose. The album works very well as an album it must be said, the order is perfect and the tracks all merge into one excellently, as they did on 'Start Something.'
'The Betrayed' isn't a bad album as such. Musically it's very competent, the guitar, keys and drums are all pieced together well, even if the production is overly poppy in parts and the lyrics and vocals are good as well. With the exception of the aforementioned tracks, especially the brilliant 'Dstryr/Dstryr,' it won't be turning any heads. It's better than 'Liberation Transmission' by some distance, but doesn't touch their previous efforts. Leave the grand rock to Linkin Park and the next Transformers soundtrack, and go back to screaming please.