Reviewed by Jade Daly
Seasoned rockers The Used have just released their sixth full length record – Imaginary Enemy and it is – without a doubt – their best work to date.
Opening track Revolution jumps straight into the irresistible raging chaos; delivering a message that is consistent throughout the entire record; change begins at home. The song’s introduction hints at the political underlines that lie beneath the riffs and beats ‘All revolutions are impossible until they happen, then they become inevitable’ which, coupled with the albums striking cover art, gives the record a new-found sense of meaning.
Cry picks up where Revolution ends, with a perfectly balanced combination of heavier verses coupled with a catchy sing along chorus; it’s easy to see why this song made the cut for the albums debut video release.
A Song To Stifle Imperial Progression (A Work In Progress) is an angry, anti capitalist anthem; a song that would sound more at home in a maxed out arena; ‘No Way, No Way USA’ is a chant clearly designed for the masses. Much like its predecessor, Generation Throwaway is a ballad that (I can only imagine) would sound its best with hundreds of people lending their voices to the cause.
The records title track, Imaginary Enemy opens with an incredibly melodic beat that inspires a slight tap of the foot (a welcome break from the rambunctious rally cries inspired by the first twenty minutes of the record – time to catch your breath.) Lyrically, this is one of the simpler tracks on the record, yet it works just as well at delivering the overall message;
‘They would rather see you all alone. Imaginary Enemy. We are much less different than we know.’
Proving that The Used really to have an incredibly versatile sound, both Kenna Song and Force Without Violence open the door to reveal a softer side to the otherwise boisterous record. This somewhat subdued sound is the perfect transition into the albums closing track Overdose – a personal favorite – which creates a euphoric sense of ease.
Overall I think this record is an outstanding piece of storytelling, that takes you on a whirlwind adventure of highs and lows. It makes you dance, sing along and feel good, whilst delivering an important yet unobtrusive message at the same time. What more could you ask for?