Scarecrow, the third studio album from Decyfer Down, is the culmination of four long years of writing and recording, and for the fans, waiting. But this album is well worth the wait. Scarecrow delivers a more mature sound with a strong Southern influence and a hint of grunge with gritty guitars; in other words, it’s fantastic. While it’s a step in a different direction from its predecessors, it’s still decidedly Decyfer Down. A mixture of slow and fast tracks showcase the band’s strong musicianship and songwriting.
“Fight to Win” is a fast-paced anthem to stand up for what is right and to not back down, while “Bleeding Lies” is a slow, meditative track: “Can you tell me why,” sings vocalist T.J. Harris, “truth cuts like a knife / And it feels like I’m bleeding these lies.”
“The River” is easily the most Southern track on the album, with a sliding guitar twang and lyrics reminiscent of a southern gospel tune: “Take me down to the river,” sings Harris, “I’m a broken man / Push me down to the bottom / Wash me from within.”
Lyrically, there’s one resonating theme in Scarecrow: it’s time to drop the hate and get back to loving one another as Christians are meant to do. The title track discusses the idea that sometimes we want to protect our group from the outside world, yet in doing so, we “stand down the weak and turn down the lost” and turn into an ugly, “hollow shell” scarecrow. And the track “Westboro” faces head-on some of those scarecrows: “Just go back to Westboro, baby, where they love to hate,” sings Harris.
Overall, Scarecrow, with its meaningful, passionate lyrics, is one of the best rock albums to come out this year.