Best of 2016 Playlist

August 29, 2015

Best of the Artist - Sleeping with Sirens

Part of our "Best of the Artist" series, this installment features Sleeping with Sirens. Lead by an almost irresistible frontman, Sleeping with Sirens have made quite the name for themselves. Unfortunately these days they’re more known for Kellin Quinn’s growing fandom, than the band’s music. So let’s count down their best songs, and remind people why we fell in love with SWS in the first place. A quick spoiler, notice how most of the top 5 songs are all from “Let’s Cheers to This”? We understand that everyone has their own opinion, so feel free to leave comments, butthurt or otherwise. 

10. The Strays / Go Go Go
A tie between these singles from the band's latest album, "Madness", they each have the ups and downs. "The Strays" a poppy anthem for the band's misunderstood fans, "Go Go Go" holding the band's pop punk, alt. rock vibe. "The Strays" holds a special place in fans hearts as the first emotionally charged song the band has released since their acoustic EP. "Go Go Go" a radio ready tune with hooks and spunk. It could find a home on the band's 2nd album. 

9. Don't Say Anything
One of the best songs from "Madness" it is written in a similar fashion to that of songs from the band's 2nd album, like "Go Go Go". The difference is the gloss coating that makes this song more appropriate for mainstream radio airwaves than a Kerrang playlist. Cliche "na nas" aplenty, the guitars give the song a rock edge, and close the album on a higher note. Not a very high point, but higher than most of the songs on this album. 

8. Congratulations (feat. Matty Mullins) 
Some people would argue that the collaboration between SWS and MGK is better. And in some aspects it is. But in the grand scheme of things, "Congratulations" better suits the band's style, and aesthetic. The R&B "Alone" seems more like a cover of an MGK song, than an original SWS piece. "Congratulations" has a certain swagger to it, and one hell of a driving guitar riff. A hard rock song that soars above the other collabs on the band's 3rd album "Feel", this number provides the band with the simple sing-a-long track that every great album needs. 

7. With Ears to See and Eyes to Hear (original/acoustic)
The title track from the band's debut album, we tied on including the original version of the song, or the acoustic. One of the band's heavier pieces, it was translated into a softer, mellower acoustic number for the band's acoustic EP two years later. Unclean vocals play a big role in the track, but are not over used as in some of the other songs from the band's debut. And the acoustic version trades these vocals in for one of Kellin's best performances. This is a classic emo, post hardcore song that should be on every post hardcore fan's playlist. 

6. Kick Me
The lead single from the band's 4th album, and arguable the best, "Kick Me" is an energetic number that is loud and in your face in the best ways possible. Sure it may be lacking a bit in the lyric department, but the head banging choruses more than make up for that. The first single to feature Nick Martin on rhythm guitars, the band proved that they were back with a vengeance, and that post hardcore flare they had in earlier years. Then they went and released the rest of "Madness" and well, read out review (link). 

5. If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn (Acoustic)
An already emotionally fueled piece, Kellin's vocals make this song all the more heart warming. Lyrics that cry out, and vocals that deliver an unprecedented amount of "feels", this one of the best acoustic renditions of any song. We could have given this spot to the original track, but the acoustic version is far superior. Softer vocals, and a stripped down sound suit this song far better than the high screams and breakdowns. Emo-acoustic anyone? 

4. A Trophy Father’s Trophy Son
A cry out to a neglectful father, Kellin pours his heart out into this song. A fan favorite, this number showcases the band's true capabilities. Creativity and musical prowess combined into one powerhouse track that is almost always in the band's setlist. Emotions take control of the choruses, and then as an added bonus they throw in a subtle breakdown. Emocore anyone?

3. Stomach Tied in Knots
Though we also included "If I'm James Dean...", it's the 3rd track from the band's acoustic EP that takes the cake. Originally a recorded as a bonus track from the band's 2nd album, "Let's Cheers to This" they released this re-recorded version for their EP. The guitar work here is spot on for this song. Like "If I'm James Dean..." the song features a stripped down SWS, with strong, swooning vocals from their frontman. A must listen to track for any new listener, or any long time fan. 

2. If You Can’t Hang
The band's signature song, and the one that every fan knows by heart. "If You Can't Hang" blends the band's pop sensibilities with post hardcore in a very natural way. The band has yet to replicate the success they found in this song in recent albums. A unique track that has that post hardcore flare, without any of the breakdowns, or gritty vocals, Kellin's voice is not the deciding factor in the song's success. 

1. Do It Now, Remember It Later 
The opening track to the masterpiece that is "Let's Cheers to This", it combines the band's post hardcore sound from their debut with some more pop punk influences. Jesse Lawson doesn't fall asleep at the helm (see what we did?) for this track, adding his unclean vocals flawlessly. Kellin's voice hits all the right notes, while not coming off as another whiney, emo kid with jeans that are too tight. A slightly more technical song, the band doesn't mince words here. "Kick Me" is a more mainstream rock version this song, but "Do It Now" holds the band's signature style. And that's why it is on top, and "Kick Me" isn't.