Album Review: Icon for Hire’s ‘You Can’t Kill Us’

Icon for Hire’s aptly titled album, ‘You Can’t Kill Us’, plunged us head-first into an emotional tidal wave. Frontwoman, Ariel Bloomer, showed off her chameleon voice by adapting to each song with diverse styles ranging from pitch perfect ballads to edgy pop-rap.

Rising fast since arriving on the scene in 2007 and launching their 2011 album ‘Scripted’ with Tooth and Nail Records, this Illinois duo caught people’s attention with their prolific, bold anthems such as ‘Make A Move’ and ‘Get Well’. Now 2016’s album returned them to their roots.

It is no surprise they opted to go independent with this uncompromisingly honest album as they explore issues such as depression, and self-harming. The raw songs featured feel a lot like a combined breath of fresh air and an emo sucker punch, from the rebellious voice of ‘Too Loud’ (“let’s stop letting everyone tell us how to feel, tell us how to dream”) to the heart-wrenching lines of ‘Under the Knife’ (“You carved a special place for your pain, so it came back to hurt you every night”).

The lyrics played center stage with electronica and rock’n’roll instrumentals from guitarist Shawn Jump created to match the mood and make us want to dance – ranging from piano riffs of ‘Invincible’ to the party anthem beats of ‘Supposed To Be.’ It’s clear that songwriter/singer Ariel has much to say and this has peaked with ‘You Can’t Kill Us’. The popular album-titled song also embodies the band’s struggles against the label system, which adds to the creative depth of their material. We read you loud and clear IFH.

2016 “You Can’t Kill Us” available here

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