Welcome to AP Mailbag, a new weekly feature where we share your opinions on things we did during the week. We had a lot of strong reactions—both good and bad—from our readers this week, regarding a number of pieces we ran. Most notably were our Saosin op-ed, Bearooth review, Amity Affliction review and our interview with the U.K.’s Fearless Vampire Killers.
In a recent op-ed, this writer made the case that Circa Survive should be put on hold for singer Anthony Green to capitalize on Saosin’s current reunion momentum and record/release a new LP. There was some initial confusion over our headline for the piece, which led to readers interpreting it as “news” and not an opinion piece, despite being labeled as a feature, not news. Circa fans got spooked, which led to Anthony Green himself getting pretty pissed about the whole thing.
Naturally, Circa fans had strong opinions about this. Commenter Stephen Pawelczyk said, “I am excited for Saosin back with Anthony Green, but not if it means putting Circa on hold. Circa is a so much better band musically.” Commenter Jarrett Disbennett told us to “eat a dick.” Anthony Green himself eventually responded on Twitter, saying, “I can juggle 50 ravenous fire breathing cats at once while making my wife a smoothie & also space records/tours out to do more than one thing.”
Commenter Nick Allman added about the headline controversy: “He isn't "bending the truth" because this is not a news article. It is an opinion piece. Magazines like AP contain both news articles and opinion pieces. To only ever contain news articles would mean a boring magazine.”
A lot of readers were surprisingly annoyed by our review of the Amity Affliction’s new LP, Let The Ocean Take Me. AP writer Kevin Stewart- Panko gave the album 3.5/5 stars, saying it “makes great strides in keeping one foot in the metalcore pool while doing a multi-directional genre dance with the other—sort of like a new-school hokey-pokey for those who would sport full sleeves and spacers.” Now, let me remind you that 3.5 stars is a good rating—anything 3 stars or higher means its worth checking out. But, apparently, Amity fans think the album deserved something higher.
Commenter Ash Jake Stephens said, “Sorry AP, but fuck you.” Reader Sagar Iyer makes the case: “Come on AP! This album has personal lyrics [and] doesn't sound generic like some of the other bands in the scene. They also have a good balance between soft and heavy. When they go soft, it's genuinely beautiful. When they go heavy, they go earth crushing heavy! They have brought their A game on this album! Definitely more than 3.5 out of 5.”
While we caught some heat for our Amity review, we got nothing but praise for our review of Beartooth’s debut LP, Disgusting. “Probably the best AP review I've read in ages. Bloody awesome album,” said reader Damien Barnett. In the review, AP managing editor Scott Heisel—who I’ve personally heard rave about Disgusting in the office for the better part of a month now—gives the album 4.5/5 stars and makes the case, “Making any comparison, positive or negative, between Attack Attack! and Shomo's new project, Beartooth, is totally misguided: The two bands sound nothing alike, and that's a testament to Shomo's seemingly bottomless well of creativity.”
Reader Mikey Duffield added, “Caleb Shomo is the hardcore version of Dave Grohl.”
AP web content manager Cassie Whitt recently spoke with the U.K.’s Fearless Vampire Killers for a lengthy interview. The strongest reaction to the interview was from readers comparing the band to My Chemical Romance. “There could be only one MCR, and it’s not them,” reader Dany Gonzalez said. “There are definite influences of MCR,” added commenter Brett Harrison, “but FVK are excellent in their own right.”
While the band may cite MCR as an influence, they don’t really sound like them. Maybe all the comparisons are coming from the fact that the band sort of resemble an early MCR? Lead singer Kier Kemp definitely has Gerard Way aesthetic about him.
Reader Vanessa Hawelu adds, “I couldn't even make it through listening to one song. Could they be trying any harder to mimic the 2003-2006 era of My Chemical Romance?”
Despite the less familiar naysayers, a quick sweep of Twitter shows emotional outpourings from fans who are both excited for the album and surprised by some of the band’s honest revelations from the interview. “That @AltPress interview is all kinds of awesome but it scares me how close FVK seem to have come to quitting,” said Heggie31.