Restoring Force (album)
|Studio album by Of Mice & Men|
|Released||January 24, 2014|
|Recorded||House of Loud, Elmwood Park, New Jersey|
|Of Mice & Men chronology|
|Singles from Restoring Force|
|Restoring Force: Full Circle|
Deluxe reissue album cover
Restoring Force is the third studio album by American metalcore band Of Mice & Men. This is the band's first album to feature bassist and clean vocalist Aaron Pauley. It was released on January 24, 2014 in Europe and Australia, January 27, 2014 in Japan and the UK and January 28, 2014 in the US through Rise Records. A deluxe edition of the album, titled Restoring Force: Full Circle, was released on February 20, 2015. It featured four bonus tracks, including an acoustic version of "Feels Like Forever".
Background and recording
The album was announced through numerous publications in late November 2013. The album was produced by David Bendeth. The album's official track listing was revealed alongside the album's announcement. The album itself was completed in October 2013.
"You're Not Alone" was the first song to be released from the album, premiering on December 1, 2013 followed by "Bones Exposed" which premiered on December 23, 2013. While "Bones Exposed" is technically the second single from the album, it did not receive an official release. "Would You Still Be There" and "Feels Like Forever" were the second and third singles from the album, released in May and October 2014 respectively, and the deluxe edition featured two of the three new tracks as singles, released in February: "Broken Generation" in the UK, and "Never Giving Up" elsewhere.
Style and composition
In an interview with Alternative Press, lead singer Austin Carlile stated that the overall sound of this album would be "more rock, or I guess a nu-metal sound you could say" and explained that their music would become a lot more structured, comparing it to bands such as Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, Slipknot and Chevelle. He went on to say that "I kind of wanted to touch on that and have our songs to have more of a rock and roll feel. Just in your face, angsty, here-it-is rock and roll."
On October 14, 2013, Rock Sound released an interview with Austin Carlile where he discussed the album. Carlile stated that the album will have a larger focus on the lyrics and the melodic aspects, like a "...fusion between Meshuggah and Nickelback". He also spoke about the vocals on the new album explaining that "...it's a whole new step in the evolution of my vocals. There's a really cool contrast between my voice and Aaron's voice, and I think we've made great use of that."
On October 17, 2013, Alternative Press released the first studio video and announced the completion of the band's third album. The band also posted this statement about the album; "Over the past few months, we've been in the studio writing & recording our third full length album with producer David Bendeth. We are excited to announce that after the most in-depth recording process we have ever experienced, the album has been completed & we can't WAIT for you to hear it! This is our most ambitious release to date & will be the first album with our newest member, Aaron Pauley. The dynamics in the band have never been stronger & we are so proud of the music we have created together. Keep your ears open for new music coming soon!."
The name "Restoring Force" is a reference to their last album The Flood. Frontman Austin Carlile explained "What happens after a disaster? What happens after 'The Flood'? You return to normal. You find balance again. That's what we felt like we were doing with this album. We wanted this record to bring equilibrium back to our band and music. We're letting everyone know what we're here to stay. We're 'Restoring Force.'". The cover of the album, a sea shell, is a visual representation of the return to equilibrium. In an interview for Big Cheese magazine, drummer Valentino Arteaga explains "One of the main symbolic reasons for having the shell [on the artwork] came from the idea of the Restoring Force helping regain the balance in a human. The Cochlea, or inner ear, is the place where your equilibrium is maintained, and it is shaped like a shell."
The single "You're Not Alone" was given a similarity to Deftones by Artistdirect, praising its energy and the coordination between vocalists Austin Carlile and new singer Aaron Pauley, along with the riffs of the song "...striking an elegant balance between crashing heavy metal and careening hard rock.".
The album was released on January 28, 2014 through Rise Records. After the album's release, the band embarked on a two-month tour with Bring Me the Horizon. The band also headlined in the UK in April 2014 with supporting bands Issues and Beartooth. Before its official release, the album was made available to stream online for fans to listen to on January 21, 2014.
Despite the album being completed in October 2013, it was chosen to be officially released in January 2014. In an interview with Austin Carlile, he stated that the reason for this was because "It's a good way to start the year and it gives us the whole year to really push on and tour, it'll be great feeling like we have the whole year ahead of us.". The album was also promoted through a "bundle pack", where you can get the album along with other franchise, including a limited edition of a coloured LPs, making this the first album by the band to be released on vinyl disk.
In late 2014, it was announced that they would release a deluxe edition of the album called Restoring Force: Full Circle which would include three brand new songs along with an acoustic version of "Feels Like Forever".
Restoring Force was predicted to have sold between 45,000 and 55,000 copies in its first week. It would end up selling 51,000 copies in its first week, debuting at number four on the US Billboard 200. The album is the band's highest charting album, peaking at number one for the first time on the Independent Albums and Hard Rock album charts. It has sold 207,000 copies in the United States as of August 2016.
Restoring Force received mostly positive reviews from critics, who complimented the different sound of the album. At Alternative Press, Phil Freeman rated the album four stars out of five, and noted that sometimes the album feels like a departure from its predecessor, but stated "if the bolder moves on Restoring Force turn out to be signs of the band's musical future, it could have an impact across the scene." Loudwire's Chad Childers stated that Pauleys vocals complimented Carliles screams throughout the album, and also praised the decision to have David Bendeth as their producer as he challenged the band to re-evaluate their writing process. He went on to applaud the album's range of moods and sounds, going from the brutality of the 'Public Service Announcement' to the melodic side of the band of 'Space Enough to Grow'.
Several reviews have stated that the band's new direction, much like their statement, had gone towards a more nu metal approach.[dead link] Rocksound reviewer Andy Ritchie stated that album sounds as though it is a completely different band compared to their previous releases, however will divide their fanbase. The review went on to claim that the album's roots are "firmly embedded in turn-of-the-century nu metal," but later went on to say that it still contains some of the band's "textbook metalcore," and that it was a unique sound either way.[dead link] AbsolutePunk also highly praised the band's new style, since their previous albums had been efforts to be "ninety percent of today's average band trying to make it the metalcore/post-hardcore/risecore scene." Furthermore, they were surprised that Carlile had changed his screams to a more nu metal style from his previous metalcore style, but again praised this highly.
|1.||"Public Service Announcement"||3:32|
|2.||"Feels Like Forever"||3:13|
|4.||"Would You Still Be There"||3:12|
|8.||"You Make Me Sick"||3:21|
|10.||"You're Not Alone"||3:21|
|11.||"Space Enough to Grow"||3:38|
|Restoring Force: Full Circle bonus tracks|
|13.||"Something to Hide"||3:30|
|14.||"Never Giving Up"||3:39|
|15.||"Feels Like Forever" (Acoustic)||3:11|
|Top Canadian Albums (Billboard)||9|
|US Billboard 200||4|
|US Rock Albums||2|
|US Independent Albums||1|
|US Hard Rock Albums||1|
|UK Albums Chart||17|
|UK Rock Chart||2|
|Australian Albums Chart||9|
|New Zealand Albums Chart||36|
|US Billboard Rock Albums||47|
|US Billboard Hard Rock Albums||11|
|US Billboard Independent Albums||17|
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I think our newer stuff is a lot more structured...
- "It's our time to step out into the real world". Rocksound. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
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Aaaaand here are the band's April UK tour dates with Issues and Beartooth...
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...is likely to sell between 45,000 and 55,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release...
- Crane, Matt (5 February 2014). "Of Mice & Men's 'Restoring Force' debuts at No. 4, sells 51,000 copies". AltPress. Retrieved 5 February 2014.
he band's album landed at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 chart, selling 51,000 copies its first week.
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"But overall, singer Austin Carlile (ex–Attack Attack!) and the boys are on a thrashy mission to modernize the forbidding resolve of old-school nu-metal." - Editor
- Guido, Emma (February 7, 2014). "OF MICE & MEN – RESTORING FORCE (ALBUM REVIEW)". Cryptic Rock. Retrieved November 24, 2014.
Straying away from the "scene band" label, Of Mice & Men demonstrate their growth and versatility on this album with their range of nu metal influences and hard rock vibes.
- Bird, ed. 2015, p. 24
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