For a band that has released five full-lengths, one compilation, and now four EPs, this latest offering from Canadian rock band Bend Sinister feels underwhelming. Very much working from the Lenny Kravitz and Matchbox Twenty school of rock, The Other Way is a hodgepodge of melodies and good ideas that are watered down by a lack of grit. The question you always have to ask when presented with any creative work is, “Does this make me care?” The answer for The Other Way is, unfortunately, a fairly clear ‘No’.

There are a couple exceptions, of course, the most notable being the bridge of “Run”, an adrenaline rush of a section on a progressive track. And, too, there is an interesting deviation from the group’s typical rock sound into more pop-indie sensibilities on their single “Walk The Other Way”, which takes every trick out of the cap to make it replayable. But like the rest of the album, it’s more concerned with maintaining radio-friendly pop sensibilities, and not contemporary ones. This is the most inoffensive, unobtrusive music I have listened to this year, and that is not necessarily a good thing. To me, rock and roll should not feel safe, and this EP is the equivalent of elbow pads; it might be a good idea, but it is safe, forgettable, and ultimately not that important.

Overall, The Other Way is an album that you could get away with playing for your significant other, your mom, your grandmother, and your church group. But if you are looking for something with teeth this may not be for you. It’s not a classic, nor is it terrible; it just is.

The Other Way Track Listing:

01. Move A Little Slower
02. Get Along
03. Walk The Other Way
04. Run
05. Rock N Roll
06. Gonna Be Alright

Run Time: 21:22
Release Date: September 22, 2017

Have a listen to the group’s single “Rock N Roll”