After the first two songs‚ Uglysuit's eponymous album is at a crossroads -- jostling between the melodic exploration of opener "Brownblue's Passing" and the polished‚ radio-friendly single "Chicago." For better and worse‚ "Chicago" sounds like an instant hit -- the kind that could find its piano hook in an MTV "reality" soap opera. It's an extremely catchy song‚ but it's also the most disposable. But if pop fame were the only thing on Uglysuit's collective mind‚ what would follow would differ from the sprawling seven-minute jams that define the album.
After unloading their token radio-friendly hit‚ Uglysuit create a piano driven sound with anthemic choruses to call their own. On "… And We Became Sunshine‚" the longest track on the album‚ Uglysuit take their best pop elements and expand them into a multilayered song that remains cohesive throughout. Driven by its interplay between smooth piano keys and rougher guitar chords‚ "Sunshine" showcases a lot of the young group's talents all in one place. Wisely‚ Uglysuit then give listeners a chance to catch their breath on "Elliot Travels‚" a minute and change of piano ambience.
"Everyone Now Has A Smile‚" their other seven-plus-minute track‚ contrasts the hardest hitting guitars on the album with lulling "la la las." The song gradually builds to the point where the last couple minutes border on epic arena rock. Like "Chicago‚" the end of the song is catchy‚ but doesn't quite feel like the band's own. But just when it feels like Uglysuit might be slipping into conventions again‚ they end the album with a beautiful five-plus-minute instrumental‚ a great ending that finds strength in simplicity. With this album‚ Uglysuit prove they have enough talent to take their sound in two different ways - accessible three-minute pop songs or introspective jam odysseys. And while they might catch flack in the future for favoring one sound or the other‚ their debut album has a healthy blend of both.