The new album by …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead is a weird one. Their CDs have always been dramatic with lots of peaks and valleys and changes of pace. So Divided seems like the band was caught between producing something marketable, keeping their old formula and growing as a band. The bad news is some of these songs seem completely out of place. The good news is that there are some impressive tunes here. One of them is the driving opening song, Stand in Silence. Much of the writing is dark and they begin with, “All that was left of me were walls of doubt/ I asked a question but the world returned with silence/ All that I wanted to know is where'd everyone else go?” This song is followed by the decent anthem, Wasted State of Mind. Unfortunately a few songs don’t really work including the silly and wandering Naked Sun. The other tunes rang from piano based songs to emo to pop to retro rock and while there are some nice moments there is no cohesive structure in which to build any emotional momentum. Source Tags and Codes is the only disc from these guys that I really get in to and it looks like it will remain that way. I really will still be disappointed if rumors of the band breaking up after this album turn out to be true, because despite the flaws of So Divided this is a band trying to be creative and yet stay relevant in the current pop scene. Unfortunately, the result of their efforts is a moderately pleasing album.
2.30 out of 4.00 on the Vin Swanson Scale