Nearly four months after the release of their first full-length album, N.Flying are back with a repackage. June’s Moonshot seemed to be popular on the blog, and grew on me (a bit) as time went on. But, I’m pretty picky about rock music. I prefer my rock infused with other genres (like electro or hip-hop). A straight-ahead rocker must pair with a killer melody or stadium-filling energy to fully capture my attention. Sadly, Sober lacks both elements.
Clearly, the song isn’t designed to be a stadium-filler. It’s more nuanced and emotional, and that’s fine. In fact, it’s nice to hear the guys pull back and offer something more unguarded. As usual, both vocalists sound great and contrast nicely with each other. As the chorus surges with marching band-like drums and guitar, Sober feels like it’s building toward a spectacular moment of release. Instead, the song cycles along, returning to the rootsy sound of its verses without landing any serious punches.
This is where melody plays a heavy role. Had this same arrangement been bolstered by a grab-you-by-the-collar series of melodic refrains, I’d be raving about a spectacularly affecting track. But rather than find an enduring tune, Sober feels too dependent on the band riffing over the vibe laid down by the instrumental. Other listeners may uncover melodic treats that passed me by, but the track just doesn’t hit the way I hoped it would.