SILVERSTEIN - 18 Candles: The Early Years

Silverstein - 18 Candles: The Early Years

18 songs
70:29 minutes


Three years ago, Canadian emo punks Silverstein entered the world with their phenomenal debut album When Broken Is Easily Fixed, and consolidated their reputation two years later with their sophomore effort Discovering the Waterfront. Both albums received 9 points on this website, which is why I was looking forward to this early years compilation. Well, sometimes it's better not to wake the sleeping giants, as is the case with Silverstein who soberly demonstrate that they also used to be just an average under-produced emo band before they had the budget to give them the sound we so much liked on their regular albums.

The compilation starts with the band's first demo Summer's Stellar Gaze from the year 2000, lacking mostly in the sound department and making listening to the six songs a veritable chore. It continues with their 2002 demo When The Shadows Beam, convincing already with a better sound (they had the same producer as on their debut album), but otherwise very uninteresting because most of these six songs are featured in more powerful versions on their first album. Because three quarters of an hour isn't enough for a compilation, we are treated with six more songs. Two uninvolving acoustic songs are followed by three lacklustre live tracks. The album ends with an industrial remix of Smile In Your Sleep from last year's album, and strangely enough, this is the highlight of the CD, on the one hand because we are in presence of a really good song, but on the other hand because it's here where the Silverstein really dare to tread on new paths.

In the end, 18 Candles: The Early Years is a compilation that only die-hard Silverstein fans need. Everybody else will be bored by these early recordings that at no time have the conviction and power of their two regular albums.

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