You Me At Six - Sinners Never Sleep
You Me at Six have undeniably become one of the UK's biggest bands over the past four years, from humble beginnings and using public transport in order to make it to their own gigs to headlining the Brixton Academy earlier this month and in essence officially 'making it', it's been an exciting upward trajectory of highs for the Weybridge quintet. Preceding "Sinners Never Sleep" however, the band's third album, has been the opening of cracks roughly sealed over involving the band's more private ventures through the music industry. Stories of fraught band relations between vocalist Josh Franceschi and the rest of the band surfacing while disturbing attempts by the industry to tamper with and manufacture the band have also been spoken of ominously, it suggests that growing up in the spotlight may have started to become too much for the five still very young Surrey boys.
This album then is a triumph of sorts in its raising of fingers to those wanting to pervert the band, brilliantly demonstrated on the killer 'Time Is Money', and the pulling through of the band as friends and not just colleagues, again documented in the bruisingly dark anthem 'Bite My Tongue'. It's an album that examines the You Me At Six sound from numerous different angles and shall therefore be received as a perfect piece of work by their many fans while certainly proving to be a point of interest for those less caring.
The classic exuberant huge chorused band of old is still very much here, opener and lead single 'Loverboy' holds no surprises and plays to its strengths in its catchiness, the following 'Jaws To The Floor' is similarly radio-ready and 'This Is The First Thing' offers a love-lorn commentary for which the band have become known. Elsewhere though some much more intriguing things are at play, 'Bite My Tongue' and 'Time Is Money', featuring Bring Me The Horizon's Oli Sykes and Parkway Drive's Winston McCall respectively, are dripping in spit and aggression, stepping forward as huge ground-shaking anthems that recall the post-hardcore element of the band's killer and sadly-forgotten 'We Know What It Means To Be Alone' EP while the poignant 'Little Death' is equally memorable with a genuine epic quality and great guitar work from Max Helyer and Chris Miller, perhaps an element of the You Me At Six sound that also goes too often unappreciated.
Finally the band venture into more restrained measured territory with the likes of 'No-One Does It Better' and 'When We Were Younger', the latter reminding strangely of Mogwai while the former soothes like 'Morning View'-era Incubus, it's impressive stuff and important evidence of them progressing as a band. Equally this is also where the album can be frustrating at times with the newer shades of sound that the band are trying completely outshining the more familiar moments, all of which pale in comparison to anthems of old like 'Gossip' or 'Save It For The Bedroom' anyway, suggesting that maybe the band should have been more ambitious in the same vein that BMTH were so successfully last year with 'There Is A Hell...'.
That aside though, You Me At Six are very much stepping forward as a band and proving why they should be seen as such a big deal and this album shall certainly see them go to huge heights in its often surprising and powerful nature. The most exciting thing about the record though is where it hints the band are going to go next and from that it's safe to say that the next two years are going to be very interesting indeed.