With obvious nods to Hysteria-era Def Leppard and the recently reunited glam metal outfit The Darkness, the sound of Wyatt Blair’s second full-length album, Point of No Return, is an unironic throwback to the days of effects-laden guitar shredding, rapid fire drum machines, blazing keyboards, and reverse crash cymbals. The record opens with the unapologetic lines, “In this world it’s win or lose. Day or night, only the strong survive,” and with those words we are off to the races.
Songs on Point of No Return typically begin with the sound of a bottle breaking or a cougar’s growl before Blair enters with a screaming guitar riff or an irresistibly catchy synth hook. It’s obvious after the first three tracks that this is an album that praises style over substance.
Amongst the twelve heavy-hitting, adrenaline-pumping jams there are a few tracks that differentiate themselves. The reggae-inspired “Cruel World” as well as Point of No Return’s centerpiece, a power ballad titled “Patience” break things up rather nicely. Not to be outdone, the album’s penultimate song “Cherry Pie” may just be one of the hottest make out jams of 2016.
After multiple listens, the scorching retro-rock numbers that make up the bulk of Point of No Return start to blur into one another. While this may not be a problem for casual listeners intending on using the record as a soundtrack for a party or cardio workout, those hoping for something more substantial may find the album’s accelerated material fatiguing over time. Regardless, Wyatt Blair’s Point of No Return definitely offers something refreshingly different in terms of its approach and attitude, and it’s undeniable how much fun this collection is. You’d be hard-pressed to find another record this summer as consistently upbeat as Point of No Return.