Album Review: Tonight Alive ‘The Other Side’

Words by Cassie Burke

Australian pop-rock five-piece, Tonight Alive have released their highly anticipated second studio record ‘The Other Side.’ The album is a follow up to their 2011 debut record ‘What Are You So Scared Of?’ which debuted at 15 on the Australian charts. ‘The Other Side’ has already beaten its predecessor, at number five in the same charts.
Frontwoman, Jenna McDougall is among the few whose vocals can match Hayley Williams’ (of Paramore), and the rest of the band is right there with her. Tonight Alive has stuck to their punk rock roots in their second album, which is sure to please their fans.

Don’t get me wrong though, ‘The Other Side’ brings in something new from the band. With a more mature sound, the album heads toward a slightly darker atmosphere. ‘The Other Side’ starts off with its lead single, “The Ocean” a fast paced guitar driven track, before diving into an array of heart-breaking yet upbeat songs like “Don’t Wish”, which the band claims was the first track they wrote for the album. The title track for the record “The Other Side” features a powerful chorus that is slightly reminiscent of Avril Lavigne in the early days. While most of the album is guitar heavy with confident riffs and pounding drums, the band tones it down a bit for the closing track. “You Don’t Owe Me Anything,” starts off with Jenna singing along to a low-key piano tune before the rest of the band joins in halfway through.

McDougall described the theme of the latest album on the band’s website. “It talks about challenges and experiences that we’ve never been through or understood before. I think we found our lyrical and musical direction, and through that wrote a rockier and more confident version of What Are You So Scared Of?” The band travelled to LA to record their first album with Mark Trombino, known for his work with Blink-182 and Jimmy Eat World, but this time they stayed closed to home, setting up their own studio in a big house seven hours north of Sydney.

Tonight Alive, who has gained their recognition through constant touring across the globe, continues to do so with shows lined up across North American and Australia, as part of the Vans Warped Tour.

The Verdict: 8/10

Buy ‘The Other Side’ on Itunes now.

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