Through the years I have always attempted to keep an ear to KITTIE – always hearing potential in their music, but never quite hearing it embraced. This is once again the main element that consumes the aptly titled “I’ve Failed You”. Somewhere deeper in this band lead by the Lander sisters is a strong act, but generally speaking this sixth album only shows their potential in moments.
KITTIE has all the elements for a unique and solid Metal band. The dueling vocals (a throaty scream and the melancholic crooning), the chugging riffs, the occasionally solid lead or solo guitar portion, and the mid-tempo almost Rock like rhythms would indicate that this band has grown leaps since their Nu Metal debut. The inclusion of added guitar chemistry has done wonders for the their depth of sound and the Gothic tones that streak through their heavy handed structures can give some great pushes and pulls. “We Are The Lamb” is a prime example of how it can work in more conventional means or the duality of “What Have I Done” when it kicks into the abrasive and energetic mid section before diving into the rather impressive solo. This is the KITTIE I continually want to hear more of.
It’s too bad that this is such a small portion of “I’ve Failed You”. The rest of the album loiters in a ‘by the numbers’ fashion, seemingly hitting a mid-tempo stride that the uninspired writing never breaks free from. Even when throwing in some of the more impressive ideas (the acoustics on “Empires (Part 1)” or the triplet attack of the title track), the band rarely flows with it. By the halfway point of the album, “I’ve Failed You” sinks into far too much filler territory and it significantly bogs the entire record down.
This album is of similar sound to the last release, but it suffers from lackluster writing and poor execution of the ideas at hand. The addition of stronger solos and occasional up-tempo aggressive tracks help, but even then its only moments on the entire album. As with the rest of their discography, I will be waiting to see KITTIE knock the next one out of the park…high hopes and low expectations.
Songs to check out: “I’ve Failed You”, “We Are The Lamb”, “Empires (Part II)”.
(Online February 21, 2012)