Review: You Me At Six – Hold Me Down

Big things have hit Surrey quintet You Me At Six fast and hard, in the past year. Not that it shows any signs of wear on the band, with their debut release, Take Off Your Colours, only seeming like yesterday.

Hold Me Down takes the band a step further musically, maybe with the growth of them as people, their songs have grown in the same way. Intro track The Consequence sounding a lot less like an under-age party anthem than many are used to – it’s rockier, it’s edgier, it’s still got the classic You Me At Six sound, (there’s even a cheeky cameo from The Blackout co-frontman Sean Smith thrown in for good measure) but it’s definitely more grown up.

New single Underdog keeps the fun pop-punk fans are accustomed to alive and well in itself, with a massive chorus that is so obviously going to captivate those already in the band’s clutches just that little bit more. There’s still the obvious oozing of “love and loss” songs scattered throughout, Safer To Hate Her and Playing The Blame Game to name but a few.

However, whilst the latter is prominent in said lyrical façade can be excused – it’s synth-laden tune is just too catchy to ignore. It’s refreshing to see how much the band have matured in just a short year, and it’s very clear that, vocalist, Josh Franchesci‘s voice has also evolved to become just a pinch more gruff and, overall, a lot better sounding.

It’s hard to pick a definite stand out from this record, it’s chock full of sing-a-long choruses, some excellent guitar work, and even the obligatory “slower song” sounds great, coming in the form of anthemic Liquid Confidence, or the easier There’s No Such Thing As Accidental Infidelity.

It’s near-perfect; if anything, the record has shown a different side to the band, sounding almost equally comparable to the easy listening rock likes of the Foo Fighters, Brand New, or even Biffy Clyro at a push, as much as it does your New Found Glory’s. It’s definitely pushed them in a bigger, broader direction and, for now, the world is their oyster, one person at a time.

If Take Off Your Colours was considered a great album, this is a completely different ball game. Hold Me Down is set to catapult You Me At Six into all kinds of new places, and it’s fair to say this record is a very, very good platform for them to achieve that with.

George Cannings.

The album Hold Me Down by You Me At Six is out through Virgin Records on January 11th.

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