Vices and Virtues (Deluxe Version)
Unapologetically wearing ‘90s grunge influences on its sleeves, the Vancouver hard rock quintet Art of Dying not only recalls that time when Pacific Northwest longhairs ruled the airwaves; it also throws in some alt-metal inspiration that fans of Hinder and Incubus will immediately find familiar. In addition, Vices and Virtues abounds on the band's three-part vocal harmonies. While you can hear the members soaring on the brash opener “Die Trying,” Art of Dying's vocal prowess comes across much clearer on the arena-friendly power ballad “Sorry,” where not one note is wasted; from start to finish the band’s congruent harmonies play with an airtight flawlessness. Frontman Jonny Hetherington’s vocal versatility is put to the test all over this album. Immediately following the harmonious “Sorry,” he comes in screaming on “Whole World’s Crazy,” as though he regularly gargles with whiskey and sand. The guitar work is also notable on this tune, as Greg Bradley and Tavis Stanley go head-to-head like two alpha rams. The romantic serenade “Breathe Again” ends with plenty of room for those harmonies to stretch out.