The Used

In Love and Death

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    5
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The Used's In Love and Death is their official sophomore album, following the tide-over hodgepodge of 2003's Maybe Memories. They've found some harder guitars in the interim, filling "Take It Away" and "I Caught Fire" with directly energizing chord progressions that spill over rewardingly into triumphant choruses. "Away" even revitalizes the ridiculously played-out singing guy/screaming guy dynamic that the Used and so many of their peers unfailingly deploy. The rest of In Love and Death plays directly to the bruised souls and bleeding hearts of tortured teenage scribblers everywhere, incorporating emo/punk revivalist genre touchstones like tortured/sweet vocals, jarring time shifts, and elaborately layered production techniques. Overall, it's a promising effort from the Used.

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