Between The Stars is the fourth studio album from American rockers Flyleaf, and the first for new vocalist Kristen May. The change of a frontman, or in this case frontwoman, can be a nerve wrecking experience for a band – especially for one with a rising yet longstanding career. However, be assured that this will be a massive milestone for them. Unlike Lacey Strum’s rugged tone and screams, Kristen May uses much cleaner vocals to deliver her heart-felt lyrics, but she shouldn’t be underestimated; she’s got some serious power in those lungs. Rather than sticking to their signature sound, the band have evolved to suit her strengths with less hard rock and more pop hooks.
As expected there are plenty of pop-anthems and sing-along tracks. Particular stand outs are catchy Marionette, Swift-esque City Lights and Set Me On Fire for the small dosage of rock Flyleaf fans are missing. Closing track Home is equally strong with a powerful and motivating chorus, almost reminiscent to early Fall Out Boy. A few criticisms would be the oddly placed Well Of Lies and the unnecessary addition of the bonus tracks, which seem to be a slight step down from the rest of the album.
Overall, Between The Stars is a surprisingly solid album full of melodic and catchy pop/rock songs with universally relevant lyrics; it could be a new era for Flyleaf as this record takes them further from the hard rock world and on to the pop, hopefully giving them the commercial success and recognition that they deserve. Who knows, in a few years they could be placed next to the likes of Paramore.
– Mercedes Brown
Venue: Between The Stars
Support Band: earMUSIC