The Wedding’s latest release has sort of an ironic title. After a few years without a clear direction, the quintet is back in it. Why? After two LPs released on different record labels, they changed vocalists and put out two EPs. While The Wedding’s fan base was super pumped to have ex-Letter Kills vocalist Matt Shelton on board, they were held in limbo – the band never really took off. This wasn’t the fault of the guys – they were bound by legal troubles resulting from the dissolution of label Brave New World records (which released their second record Polarity). To the band’s credit, they did their best to roll with the punches and keep things moving by touring frequently. After many complaints of “why aren’t these guys signed?” in the blogosphere there began to be rumblings of a deal with Tooth and Nail Records. These rumblings turned out to be true, and now the band has released their first full-length in four years, No Direction. The band is back at it folks, and is plainly looking to go far.
The title track leads the album with a poppy but confident tune that may have some fans confused by the lack of punch, but this confusion is aptly dissolved in the following three tracks, the highlight being “The Lesser Worth”, which features guest vocals from Story of the Year’s own Dan Marsala. “In the End” has muscle but not as much memorability, and “The Raconteur” is the other way around. The middle section of the record is marked by a trio of slower tracks, recalling the power ballads of Polarity but with more grit. “The Wildest Ocean” is the most deviant from the typical sound of the band, with its off-kilter subtle background static and the ambient guitar backed by soft bass beats. One can almost picture Matt Shelton walking down the beach singing this song on an overcast day, a la Chris Martin of Coldplay in the music video for “Yellow.” “Kill Any Excuse” succeeds at waking up the listener with it’s crescendoing hardcore punk-esque intro, complete with gang vocals. “Heartbreak in Melody” devoted fans will recognize from the band’s previous Distance EP, albeit this time with better production and more muscle than before. Following more a few more solid tracks, the album ends with an extended version of the Distance EP‘s “The Distance Between You and I,” dubbed “Distance and Revolution.” Nice pun. In short, this album won’t wow music snobs but it’s a solid album sure to help the band get its momentum back.