Adelitas Way – Stuck (Album Review)

Adelitas Way - Dog on a LeashAfter three years of silence, Adelitas Way has returned to the scene with Stuck, their third studio release. Following their last release Home School Valedictorian, Adelitas Way took a step back from the spotlight and apparently took that time to not only get introspective, but to broaden their horizons. Front man Rick DeJesus spoke with The Pulse Of Radio about the meaning of the title, Stuck, and what opened his eyes. “I’ve seen through the eyes of so many people, from my friends to just my peers, myself, everyone — at some point, you know, they feel stuck in life, they feel like their feet are in the mud,” he said. “You know, they feel like they’re trying to pull out and trying to move forward and trying to grow, and just sometimes you can’t.

Adelitas Way – Dog on a Leash:

Well, despite their temporary hiatus Adelitas Way has come back with a new album that does justice to their legacy so far. A well-paced, emotion driven rock ride, Stuck may not be the hardest album of the year, but it is one of the easiest to listen to. Opening with the raw and aggressive single “Dog On A Leash,” the guys knew just how to kick things off with a bang. Although the rest of the album does flow really well, it never really gets much heavier than this. This track is filled with the pent up aggression and rage of being restrained and taunted. This is followed by the melodic and bouncy “Save The World” which features a swelling chorus with highly infectious, bouncing rhythms reminiscent of the chords often heard in experimental grunge. As the album progresses, DeJesus and company make their way into more and more evocative vocal and instrumental impressions, making compelling pleas for truth, love and honesty like in “Different Kind Of Animal.”

As we approach mid-record, the song “Keep Me Waiting” features a lot of the basic rock elements, but with one very major difference from its peers- it flat lines at the bridge/chorus. The guitar by Robert Zakaryan is poignant and effective working in complement with Andrew Cushing’s bass and Trevor Stafford’s timely drum beats, but the vocals at the chorus leave a little to be desired. The attempt at a high-end, echoic chorus actually comes across as a little pitchy and a startling twist given the otherwise upbeat tone of the song. Perhaps an adjustment in the key of the song or a shift in key change at the chorus would have made for a smoother transition. The guys pick things up again later in “Not Thinking About Me” with its balance between the somber and steady and then the rough and jaded. The pain of knowing when you’ve found the one and yet you don’t even register with them.

Blur” brings in a groovy, hard rock feel with rhythmic drums that set the march of the track and bring back an almost Bush-like feel in the way DeJesus’ vocals carry alongside the vibrancy of Zakaryan’s guitar. it is here that the grungiest of elements make their way to light on the album. On “Something More,” Adelitas Way brings forth a sentiment similar to The Verve’s 1997 hit “Bittersweet Symphony” with it’s classical sound accented by what sounds like violin crispness. The instrumental dexterity on this track is intriguing and upsweeping with its cleanliness and simplicity. Sometimes the best songs are the simplest, and Adelitas Way succeeds in not overcomplicating a beautifully executed song.

Closing on “We Came,” the guys come full circle, bringing back driven guitars and gritty vocals as heard in “Dog On A Leash,” but still falling short of its power-packed delivery. “We Came” is another reminder of the time in which Adelitas Way rose to fame, the early to mid 2000’s when rock was out to prove a point and pave the way for the new generation of listener to better find their niche. The riffs are catchy and magnetic with a pumping drive and underlying groove and sway that’s showcased by excellent timing and pace. So, if you’re looking for something to make you nostalgic for the early 00’s pick up Stuck. It features the just enough rock, pop, and grunge to make it interesting, but balanced well enough to keep it from being frivolous. Adelitas Way have made their time away seem like no time at all and fans are sure to appreciate both the consistency and signs of development.

Unsung Melody Score: 8 out of 10

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