“Call You Out”
October 30, 2012 - A&M/Octone
New Horizons arrives burdened by the news that it’s Flyleaf’s last with vocalist Lacey Sturm, who’s chosen to step down from frontwoman duties and be a full-time mom. It’s hard to say whether that’s a good or bad thing, based on the new songs, most of which seem to indicate that even the four who are planning to push on have kind of reached the end of the road, creatively speaking. Every song on New Horizons operates in one of three basic modes: There are a few Paramore-gone-grunge tracks (the title track, “Cage On The Ground,” “Stand”), some heavier ones that sound like a cross between In This Moment and Audioslave (“Call You Out,” “Freedom,” “Green Heart”), and a ballad or two (“Bury Your Heart,” “Broken Wings”). While they’re all fine, there’s nothing that leaps out as brilliant, just like there’s not a single example of the band trying something genuinely risky and new, and falling on their collective face. Despite its optimistic title, New Horizons is the sound of a band with no place left to go.