Favorite Tracks: Pretty Things, What I Need, Do You Ever Think?
Decedy have released their long-awaited debut album, titled “1979.” After listening to this album, its name makes sense. The band seems to draw their influences from some older rock music, and this is shown very clearly across these songs. “Intro” shows off the vocals quite a bit. I honestly think it’s a really good introductory track and kind of wish that it was longer than it is. “Pretty Things” shows the talent that the vocalist of this band has. The chorus is one of the best choruses on the whole record and has one of the best vocal performances on the whole record. (Not to mention that the drums on here are pretty good as well.) “What I Need” stood out to me from first listen, especially because of the lyrics, with lines such as “Thank you for helping calm all my thoughts for me. You see I can't help but wonder how things could and might be.” In addition, the vocals on here are impressive and the guitar solo blew my mind. “Wasting Time” is a softer track that, yet again, lets the vocals shine. “Do You Ever Think?” instantly became a favorite from the moment I heard it. The vocals are incredible, there’s another impressive guitar solo, and some more well-written lyrics like ”All your hopes and your cares, let them all float back to you. All your worries and your fears, let go of all of them too.” “Back And Forward” has some pretty good melodies that get better as the song goes on. It’s pretty catchy and honestly just a fun track to listen to. “Petunia” is another softer song, with some great vocals that just impressed me more and more as the song continued. Again, it shows the band’s fantastic lyrical style, and one like that really got my attention was “Everything will work out fine in time. Don't fear; I'm here.” “Figuring Myself Out” is more of an acoustically-driven track for the most part, and that softer instrumentation allows the emotion in the vocals to really show, especially during lines like ”Finding strength, but I'm hardly feeling stronger.” “Forte” starts out as another one of the softer songs on the record, but it builds up as it goes on, leading up to a hard hitting chorus. Another hard hitting thing about this song is its lyrics, especially “You come to me in darkness, I'll show you light, I can tell you it'll be alright. You're not here alone.” As well as that, the melodies, especially in the verses, are really catchy. “Outro” is essentially just a more hard hitting version of the album’s opening track, which I found very interesting. It shows so much emotion in any way possible, from the incredible guitar and bass parts to the fantastic vocals. Overall, I really enjoyed this record. In all honesty, I don’t listen to that much of this style of rock music, but “1979” is a memorable record for sure and is one I can see myself coming back to.
Favorite Tracks: Phosphenes, Bruise, Flowers By The Bed
Casey have released their latest record, “Where I Go When I Am Sleeping.” I’d heard of this band before and actually checked out the lead single off of this record when it came out and was quite impressed by it. I have heard nothing but good things about Casey in the past, so I had some pretty high hopes for this record, and it didn’t disappoint. “Making Weight” is a softer track, which kind of surprised me. It shows so much emotion all throughout and fades out beautifully, making a fantastic opening track. “Wavering” has some more emotion, especially in the vocals, which are much heavier (for the most part) when compared to the vocals on the previous track. There is a clean vocal section on this track and that performance was also very well done, and there’s a very impressive guitar part backing it up. “Phosphenes” has more incredible vocal performances, but the real highlight of this track is the lyrics. With lines such as “I’m left to contemplate if I’m really getting better, or if I’m just numb to the feeling of falling apart” and “I guess progress isn’t really what I thought it would be,” this is, without a doubt, one of my favorite songs on this entire record as far as the lyrical content goes. “&” is a dark interlude that transitions into the lead single “Fluorescents.” It has great lyrics like “So give me one good reason to believe I’m getting better” and also includes some very impressive drum parts. “Flowers By The Bed” is a much slower track and one that could arguably be the most emotional track on this whole record. With painfully honest lyrics such as ”And it pains me knowing that you were taking time out of your life to make sure I was still on the medication that made me stay when I didn’t want to” and a hard hitting chorus, the emotion really shines through on this track, making it one of my favorites on here. “Needlework” has interesting guitar parts and yet another incredible vocal performance. This track has some softer instrumentation, like the next track, the haunting ballad “Morphine.” “Bruise” and “The Funeral” both have some fantastic melodies all throughout, showing off the vocalist’s range. The title track “Where I Go When I Am Sleeping” has some great instrumentation that gradually builds up and gets louder as the song goes on, until the song fades out (and does so very nicely, I might add). The final track on here is “Wound,” and it’s easily the most aggressive track on here, as the energetic instrumentation is paired with some of the harshest vocals on the whole record. Overall, I really enjoyed this record. I loved the emotion shown from the beginning of this record to the very end in many different aspects of each song.
Favorite Tracks: I Hate The Gooey Disk, The Soundtrack To Missing A Slam Dunk, How Do You Know It’s Not Armadillo Shells?
Hot Mulligan have released their latest record, titled “Pilot.” This is a band I’ve heard so much about for so long but for some reason, could never really get into up until recently. Once I heard this album, that’s when things really clicked and when I became a huge fan of this band’s music. “Deluxe Capacitor” immediately feels like an album opener. The instrumentation on here is pretty good, I loved the vocals on here, and overall, it starts out the album off pretty strong. “All You Wanted By Michelle Branch” is the lead single off of this record and it’s a great choice for that. The guitar parts are impressive, the melodies are very memorable, and it includes one of my personal favorite lyrics on the album: “I was the one to break your fall, but now I'm gone.” One track that surprised me was “I Hate The Gooey Disk.” The intro is already catchy, but the chorus on here is one of the best on the record, with the fantastic drumming and incredible vocal performance. Speaking of which, the shouted vocals on here are amazing and add more emotion to the track. Up next is another single, “The Soundtrack To Missing A Slam Dunk.” The song is catchy on every possible level, from the impressive lead guitar parts to the vocal melodies. It has more interesting, yet relatable, lyrics, such as “Come one, come all, see the kid who can't breathe; attempt to explain why his voice has been failing.” If you thought the lyrics on that track were emotional, just wait until you hear the following track, “Pluto Was Never Really A Planet Either Even.” There are plenty of incredible lyrics on here that I absolutely love, such as ”But this isn't me, it's my final critique of my bones, of my skin, of the hate killing me,” “I’ve grown to fear the isolation I chose to take a part of,” and ”I'd lose everything, to make up for the person I've been.” The softer instrumentation allows the vocals to truly shine, showing the emotion in those well-written lyrics. “Wes Dault Can’t Find The Madison Falcon” has an interesting intro, from the catchy riff to the energetic drums driving it. The instrumentation on the entire song is honestly a highlight of the track - that and the line ”That's just a paper heart, we tend to grow apart.” "*Whispers* Thank You" was a track that really surprised me. The vocals on here are honestly pretty aggressive, and I feel like that fit the song well. The guitars and drums drive the energy in "Good Ol' Mr. Rags. There are some fantastic melodies throughout this entire track, especially during the catchy chorus. "Scream Mountain" has some really catchy and well-written guitar parts, as well as some emotional vocals, but if you thought that track was full of emotion, just wait until you hear "How Do You Know It's Not Armadillo Shells?" The song is full of honest lyrics like "I just need some time to know what's wrong in my head" and "I'm always disappointed in the things I write; even when I speak, it seems the words will never come out right," and a fantastic vocal performance to accompany it. It's a really catchy track from beginning to end, especially the hook in the intro. The final track on here is "There Was A Semi Fight On I-69, and it might just be the most hard hitting track on "Pilot." The instrumentation is insane, especially the extremely impressive guitar parts, and this track has some of the most aggressive vocals on the entire record. Overall, I really liked this record. It's one that really surprised and impressed me in so many ways.
Favorite Tracks: Aftermath, Contretemps, Risen
Rolo Tomassi have released their latest record, titled “Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It.” I have heard nothing but good things about this record, so I decided I’d give it a listen. “Towards Dawn” is a very soft and relaxing track and it makes for a pretty good one to open up the album with. “Aftermath” brings the energy up (but there’s plenty more where that came from), especially with its huge chorus and hard hitting ending. The song fades out nicely, transitioning perfectly into the next track, “Rituals” has harder and darker instrumentation in general, from the eerie and mysterious intro to the heavy ending. “The Hollow Hour” is very dramatic with the dynamics and composition used on here, in both the vocals and the instrumentation. There are some softer moments on this track, but rest assured, there is plenty of aggression to be found on here. The screaming comes in almost out of nowhere - one of many surprises, twists and turns on this record. When this track gets aggressive, it gets extremely aggressive, and the best part is that those aggressive moments come in when the listener least expects it. “Balancing the Dark” has a pretty interesting intro as well. Each instrument added in brings something new to the song and continues to deliver the creepy vibe that this song gives off. The vocals on here are harsh, as per usual, and the instrumentation follows suit. “Alma Mater” has an insane amount of energy in the instrumentation right off the bat, and the vocals match that. There are some softer sections that elevate the track a bit, which I really enjoyed. “A Flood Of Light” adds some synths in the intro and actually has quite a lot of sections in it with clean vocals and softer instrumentation, but also throws in the aggression that’s a staple in the band’s sound, balancing the two perfectly. This song also has a huge chorus that I absolutely loved. “Whispers Among Us” is another darker track on here and another one that’s more aggressive right from the get-go rather than having the instrumentation gradually build up to those heavier moments. “Contretemps” actually has some piano in the intro, which really surprised me. The instrumentation suddenly builds up and that’s just one thing that makes this track really stand out to me. The drumming is absolutely incredible on this track and the screamed vocal performance on here is possibly my favorite (as far as the aggressive vocals go) on the entire record. “Risen” is surprisingly a much softer track. The guitar parts on here are pretty simplistic, but that’s just what this laid-back track needs. The singing on here fits well with the more ambient instrumentation, and I honestly could not think of a more perfect track to close out this album with. Overall, this album did surprise me. While there are some tracks on here I just couldn’t get into as much as others, there are some great moments on here that still really stood out to me. As I mentioned earlier, there are many twists and turns throughout this record, many surprises happening when you least expect them to - but that element of surprise is what makes this record so unique in the first place.
Favorite Track: Brighton and the Blues
Come The Spring have released their debut record “Echoes.” I hadn’t heard of this band prior to the release of the lead single from this record, but once I heard their music for the first time, I was absolutely blown away. I love the instrumentation in the intro of “13 Months.” The rhythm is unique, the bass part in particular really stands out to me, and the drums keep the energy going. The song starts to pick up the pace a bit when the verses come in. This song also has incredible lyrics like ”Give me hope, I’m struggling. I am down to my last breath, stitch me up and pull me in,” and the vocals portray that emotion very well. (That’s just one reason the vocals on this entire record are incredible, but more on that later.) The chorus on here is fantastic as well and overall, this makes for an incredible opening track. “Better Now” has some really good melodies all throughout the track, and some great instrumentation in the verses. A lyric on here that I found really interesting was the line “I’m surprised I’m still alive, I’m surprised you’re still around.” The shouted vocals in the pre-chorus and chorus show emotion already, as does the incredible bridge on this track, and the backing vocals add even more to it. “Sjö” is a purely instrumental interlude. I love the energy that this song has throughout its entirety, and find it to be one of the standouts on this record. “For What It’s Worth” is the lead single from this record, and I can definitely see why. The bass and the guitar in the beginning are amazing, the melodies are memorable, and the chorus on here is anthemic. “Brighton and the Blues” is a much slower track and is sort of a ballad. It’s the longest track on here, but doesn’t feel like it’s all that long. There’s so much emotion in every single aspect of this track. Although the hard hitting instrumentation and passionate vocals do a great job of showing that emotion, it’s the honest, vulnerable lyrics that tell the story in the first place.
The lines “Why do I do this to myself? Cause I own all my failures, I’m not worth anyrhing,” really stood out and are just a couple of many relatable lyrics on this entire record. The title track, “Echoes,” picks the pace back up and brings in so much energy, especially with the drumming that introduces it. It honestly kind of sounds like a pop punk track instrumentally, but with some shouted vocals thrown into the mix.
Once again, this track is full of honest, heartbreaking lyrics, such as “This is all that I will be” and ”I’m trying to stay clean, but sobriety isn’t me.” “Boys of Summer” has some darker instrumentation and some more emotional vocals to match. It’s a pretty interesting way to close out the record. Overall, I loved this record. There’s so much emotion and passion throughout every part of this entire record that really made it stand out. It impressed me a lot and honestly may be an early contender for one of my favorites of the year so far.
Favorite Tracks: The Opener, How To Socialize and Make Friends, I’ve Got You
Camp Cope have released their latest record, titled “How To Socialize And Make Friends.” I’d heard of this band before but never properly gave them a listen until I heard this record, and it was a fantastic first impression. “The Opener” starts the album off pretty well. The impressive bass part makes the intro better than it already is, the tempo changes make the song stand out, and the chorus on here is incredible. The title track “How To Socialize and Make Friends” is more upbeat. There’s a catchy rhythm driving the track and he melodies on here are great. “The Face Of God” has some softer instrumentation, but it builds up a bit as the song goes on. The lyrics on here are quite interesting and talk about a very serious topic. Towards the end, the vocals get louder and really shows the emotion portrayed in the lyrics. “Anna” is another softer song, letting the vocals shine and the vocal performance on here is my favorite on the entire album.
“Sagan-Indiana” also has some very powerful vocals, especially in the choruses. “The Omen” is another softer track for the most part, but each section builds up to the next and does so very well. “Animal & Real” shows off the vocalist’s range in the chorus, and the guitar parts on this track and the following track, “UFO Lighter,” are impressive. The final track “I’ve Got You” is a pretty good closer for the record. It’s mainly driven by acoustic guitar, making it pretty simplistic, yet at the same time, it’s one of the standouts on the entire record for me. Overall, I enjoyed this record. There were many moments on here that really impressed me and made me want to come back to this record again and again.
Favorite Tracks: Revolutionary, Halo Me, Hustle Everything
Faulkner have released their debut record, “Pariahs.” I had never heard of this band until I heard about this release, so I was curious about what they sounded like. One thing that this album did was surprise me. “Revolutionary” instantly feels like it would be a good opener, and it is. “Hot Streak” is another standout on here, with its catchy instrumentation, especially the bass part. “NY Anthem” was one track that I was iffy about at first, but it grew on me over time with its melodies that kept getting stuck in my head. “Halo Me” continues that, with what could arguably be one of the best and catchiest choruses on the entire record. The songwriting structure of this track is great, too. Each section builds up to the next and does so very well. “Street Axioms” starts to show some of the rock influences of the band’s sound. The instrumentation on here especially is very interesting. The unique guitar tones fit well with the band’s sound and the bass on here is really impressive. “Waters Are A Rising” has an interesting hook in the intro that comes back up during the post chorus. I love the drum parts that drive the track and the different vocal styles shown in that specific performance throughout it. “I’m Stoned” is another one of the more rock leaning tracks on here with the instrumentation (which is very impressive, I might add). “Keep Your Enemies Closer” seems to be a more pop leaning track at first, especially with the synths in the intro, but really mixes pop and rock very well. There’s a pretty good chorus on here and the piano during the rapping section of this song fits well. “Hustle Everything” shows off the band’s sound very well, showcasing both the pop and rock elements. The lyrics on here are really good and I think this is probably my favorite as far as lyrics go. I love the vocal style on this track and the final track, “Molly.” The track mixes pop and rock once more as far as the instrumentation goes, but also adds in some piano that fits perfectly. Overall, I thought this record was pretty good. It grew on me more with repeated listens and I think this band has a really unique sound that I haven’t quite heard before.
Favorite Tracks: Atlantis, Gravity Fall, Wormhole
Forbidden Seasons have released their latest record, “Promise.” I enjoy metalcore music, so I was curious to see what this band brought to the table and what about their sound makes them stand out.
“Atlantis” impressed me right from the start. The clean vocals on here are great, and the band mixes electronics into their metalcore sound, making them already stand out right from the get go. “Thank You For The Venom” has some incredible vocals as well, from the aggressive screams to the fantastic melodies in the anthemic chorus. Another single and another more aggressive track (also with a huge melodic chorus) is “Keys And Locks.” “Gravity Fall” is a track that surprised me a lot. The drums driving the track are great, the aggressive vocals in the beginning greaves my attention right away, and the overall energy that this song has made it stand out from the rest. Another track that had me interested right away was “Wormhole.” There’s a good balance of singing and screaming on here and a huge chorus. “The Human” is a bit of a softer song, but during the moments when it gets aggressive, it gets aggressive. The clean vocals and melodies on here are the standout, especially during the chorus. In contrast, “Sorrow Won’t End” is aggressive right off the bat. The song has more aggression than it does clean vocals, but the melodies in the chorus blew me away. “I’ve Seen The End In Your Eyes” has some nice vocals in the verses but so much aggression in the instrumentation. ”The Rejected” has an interesting intro and a lot of emotion in the vocal performance, especially during the chorus. The closing track, “Promise,” is a very powerful one in every possible way. In addition to the lyrics, there’s a huge instrumental intro, and the vocals on here are fantastic, especially in the pre-chorus. Overall, I enjoyed this record. I think this band stands out a bit and there were a lot of moments on this record that show why.
Favorite Tracks: Crisi d’identità, Bomber, MTV
“La domenica italiana” is an introductory track, followed by “Dodomenica” and “Impossibile,” both of which have really catchy guitar parts. I loved the bass, guitars and incredibly fast drums on “Crisi d’identità,” and it’s definitely one of my favorites as far as the instrumentation goes. The bass is also really good on the following track, “Alice.” “Friendzone” is a more laid-back track at first until the pre-chorus, which builds up well to the great chorus. “Brucia in me” is a bit of a slower track and one that stands out on this record. “Come un uragano” has some piano added in the background, and that’s easily my favorite part of the track. “Bomber” picks the pace back up and has some darker instrumentation, with I enjoyed. The bass and guitar are great on this track and on the following track, “Tossica.” Much like “Brucia in me,” “Etichetta” is another softer track on here and one that stands out. It’s primarily acoustic guitar and piano, and those parts were pretty well-written. “MTV” closes the album out pretty well with some pretty good instrumentation and melodies. Overall, I thought this album was alright. There were some moments on here that I enjoyed, especially with the instrumentation.
Favorite Tracks: Solace, Dead Flowers, You Are Nothing
After the success of their EP, Old Notes have released their debut full-length record, titled “With A Heavy Heart.” The album kicks off with ambient guitars in “Condolence” and “Solace.” “Solace” includes some shouted vocals contrasting that softer instrumentation and shows a lot of emotion. “Reach” slows things down and while it is a softer song for the most part, it has a hard hitting chorus that stands out. “Limbless” picks things up a bit with a lot of energy, especially instrumentally. The drums stood out to me a lot on this track in particular. I love the emotion in the vocals at the end of “Consolation” as the backing vocals shout “is that what you wanted?” “You Are Nothing” has some soft instrumentation at first but the louder vocals show so much passion throughout the entire song. “Rocco” and “Dead Flowers” both have some interesting guitar parts that seriously impressed me. Another pretty impressive thing about this record was the lyrics and various topics discussed throughout this album. From talking about loss in “Rocco” to mental health in “Dead Flowers” to getting over someone in “You Are Nothing,” there are a wide range of topics and scenarios being talked about on this album and there is something for everyone. “Relief” is an interlude with some great instrumentation. The album closes out with an acoustic version of “Solace,” showing the impressive instrumentation and emotion even more. Overall, I enjoyed the album. There’s a lot of emotion on here, and a lot of the performances throughout the release really impressed me.