I See Stars have been through a lot, from having spinning doors of members going in and going out to having a fall out with the infamous Ronnie Radke a few years back. Regardless of challenges they’ve faced, the Michigan formed band have managed to stay afloat, after their release of their 2013 release New Demons which was met with sort of a lukewarm reception, no one really knew if the band had any steam left in them. Now ISS have reemerged with a batch of some neatly crafted songs and what seems to be most mature album they’ve written to date with a very odd title: “Tree House”.
ISS last couple records have been themed as rebelling against the establishment which was getting tiring, but on “Tree House” it’s different and in a good way. Months before the release the record, ISS went through another lineup change by releasing their screamer and guitarist, making current lead singer Devin Oliver taking over screaming duty as well, this change for him becoming screamer is shaping very well from him because throughout the record he’s lows and highs are basically him going into “beast mode” and when he switches back and forth from clean to screaming he does so effortlessly. The songs are another story, the heaviness is there, ISS’s signature electrorock genre is there, but they’ve matured. The atmospheric tones mixed in Oliver’s high toned voice on this record is the perfect combination, “Everyone’s Safe in the Treehouse” shows the tones of voice coinciding with the synth it’s almost angelic. Almost all the songs from start finish are some of the best songs they’ve ever written. One song that stands out is “All In” which mixes in rap with ISS metalcore sound, and it works oddly enough. Oliver channels his inner Future (he’s rapper in case you didn’t know that) in each verse Oliver is shooting out words like they’re coming from the top of his head.
Throughout “Treehouse” you can hear them growing as a band, you can hear them getting better but on top of that you can sense Oliver stance as leading man in the band. Screaming and singer his evolution has been the most prominent one on the record, each song he conveys his voice as strong and as sharp as ever before. “Treehouse” is a record that will push them into the mainstream of the scene and people who have dismissed them before will likely be the loudest ones at their shows.
Review by: Raza Malik