Close Your Eyes placed themselves firmly on the melodic hardcore map with the release of “We Will Overcome” and “Empty Hands And Heavy Hearts”. Things were looking pretty good for them until vocalist Shane Raymond decided it had been fun but that he had other things to do. And so these Texans had to go looking for a new vocalist which they found in the form of Blessed By A Broken Heart’s Sam “Ryder” Robinson. So how much of an impact did this have on the band’s sound? Quite a lot apparently.
With a whopping total of fifteen tracks, “Line In The Sand” is a lot to take in, especially when the songs are all over the place. On the one hand, these guys crank out the kind of melodic hardcore they’ve become known for in cuts like “Burdened By Hope” or “”. This time around the vocals do come with a thick British accent but other than that fans of Ignite should still find this to their liking. Speaking of Ignite, Zoli contributes some vocals on “The End”. So far so good, right?
But then the band starts cranking out songs like “Frame And Glass” and “Kings Of John Payne”, which are nothing more than the kind of standard alternative rock tunes you hear on the radio all the time. And then there’s “Glory”, a straight-up worship song with extremely cheesy guitar licks and marching drums that made me throw up in my mouth a little.
There’s a lot to be said for bands who are trying to expand their sound, explore new horizons… all that stuff. But it can be hit or miss and in Close Your Eyes’ case, it’s most definitely a miss.