There’s plenty of music released every single month, and with each Monthly Music Roundup article, we share some quick reviews of several releases from throughout the month that we personally enjoyed and want to cover.
Kingdom Of Giants “Passenger”
Kingdom Of Giants have been on my radar for a couple of years now, after I discovered a single from their previous record, 2017’s “All The Hell You’ve Got To Spare.” I was excited to see that they were putting out their first release in a couple of years, and I really enjoyed it. The album starts off with what quickly became one of my favorite tracks on it, “Two Suns.” This track instantly showcases the balance of melody and aggression throughout the rest of the album through some attention-grabbing performances, and it also hints at the experimentation on this album with the synths that lead the intro. Singles “Night Shift” and “Side Effect” are also some perfect examples of this album’s overall sound, as they incorporate some more synths in their intros and bring a mixture of clean and unclean vocals throughout. “Wayfinder” and “Sleeper” are good examples of how the band weaved in the experimentation with those synths amongst the heavier instrumentation, and they both also contain some huge choruses with captivating vocal performances. “Blue Dream” leans towards the more melodic side, with the exception of the much heavier second verse and the riff-driven breakdown that precedes it. One of the best examples of the aforementioned experimentation, however, is an interlude titled “00397,” which is driven by synths and darker instrumentation that gradually builds up the song, and this overall darker tone makes it fit perfectly on this record.
“Burner” leans a bit towards the heavier side with the instrumentals in the intro and verses, as well as the breakdown during the second verse and the bridge later on, and all of that aggression surrounds the song’s very catchy choruses. “Sync” instantly delivers a lot of emotions in its opening lyrics, and the harder-hitting drums accompany those vocals perfectly. Within this song and “Bleach” are bigger choruses that combine the melody and aggression found throughout this album, followed by bridges and breakdowns that showcase the heavier aspects of the band’s sound. “Lost Hills” brings a perfect balance of melody and aggression, switching back and forth between both sides of the band’s sound with each section of the song, and the closing track “The Ride” incorporates everything the previous tracks had to offer, from the incorporation of synths to the mix of heavier and more melodic vocals and instrumentals, and the final chorus precedes a breakdown that ends the song and the album as a whole.
Kingdom Of Giants stand out quite a bit to me within the metalcore scene, and this album is further proof as to why. The experimentation on this album was done really well and makes it stand out even more, and overall, “Passenger” may be my favorite album that this band has released so far in their career.
Kulick “Yelling In A Quiet Neighborhood”
I initially heard about Kulick last year, prior to the interview that I did with him that summer. Fast forward a little over a year later, and he has returned with his brilliant full-length album, ‘Yelling In A Quiet Neighborhood.”
Kulick mixes quite a few different influences and genres into his sound, and one influence that I heard throughout this album was alternative music, shown through tracks like “Crawling,” with hard-hitting drums, captivating vocals delivering catchy melodies, and an anthemic chorus. The upbeat “Rope” brings some very catchy melodies as well, and the simpler instrumentals let the vocals shine even more, and “The Way I Am” also contains very strong performances early on.
There are some pop influences here as well, shown through songs like “Just Be Friends,” where the drums build up to a bigger chorus, and “Waiting For You,” a track that incorporates some piano as well, while the song leads up to its chorus, which starts out much softer but gradually gets louder towards the end. “FUN!” has slightly more simplistic instrumentals, but more instruments get added in during the pre-chorus and accompany the vocals as they deliver an emotional performance. “
The remaining three tracks slow things down for a little bit. “Lonely” has one of the best vocal performances on the entire record. “Monster,” which is driven by acoustic guitar and piano, brings an overall darker tone and another emotional vocal performance in the chorus that fits the song perfectly, and the strong closing track “Talking To The Ceiling,” which is led by the same instruments, builds up to its larger chorus and second verse where the vocals and instrumentals get louder and stand out a lot more.
“Yelling In A Quiet Neighborhood” showcases Kulick’s various influences through many very memorable tracks, and overall, it’s a very fun record to listen to.
nightly “night, love you”
I became a pretty big fan of nightly over the past few months, and as “you should probably just hang up” gradually became one of my most played songs of the past few months, I became even more excited for the band’s new record, titled “night, love you.”
The album immediately begins with a few upbeat tracks, starting with the opener “the car,” with melodies that only get catchier as the song builds up to its chorus and post-chorus, where the instrumentals bring even more energy to the track. “you should probably just hang up” is driven by upbeat synths that accompany catchy melodies during the verses, and the percussion builds the song up to a bigger chorus that’s been stuck in my head since the song first released. “not like you” is filled with memorable instrumentals and melodies, and “time online” and “lose a friend” bring a couple of the catchiest choruses on the record. There are quite a few tracks on here that are a lot slower, such as “mess in my head,” where louder instrumentals emphasize the song and accompany the soulful vocals leading up to a huge chorus and post-chorus. “summer” and “older” have more simplistic instrumentation, but they’re both very memorable tracks as well and I can see why they were chosen as singles. “so sly” shows the band’s pop rock influences with catchy instrumentals (including a guitar solo later on), the movies” has some softer instrumentation, and the closing track “i got so much to tell you” does as well, accompanying a vocal performance that really shines throughout the track with harmonies that add even more emphasis to it.
Amongst all these tracks are three interludes - “(howitfeels),” which repeats the instrumentals from “you should probably just hang up” and gradually gets slower as it prepares to transition into “not like you,” “whiskey,” which showcases what seems like a song idea, and “turnpike,” a more energetic track driven by synths and poppier instrumentals.
I was highly anticipating the release of “night, love you,” and it did not disappoint. With this album, nightly has crafted many unforgettable tracks that I’ve come back to for many repeated listens since the first time I heard them.
Bloom “In Passing”
I’ve been a fan of Bloom since the release of their single “Cold” last year, and upon hearing “The Service,” I was really looking forward to the release of their latest EP, “In Passing.”
The EP opens up powerfully with “The Service,” where the heavy vocals deliver a poignant performance right off the bat, singing and screaming lyrics that paint a picture very well as the guitars accompany them before the harder-hitting chorus. The tempo slows down touring the bridge, which shines an even brighter spotlight on the vocals and the emotion in that performance. “The Boat And The Stream” is a bit more melodic to begin with, quickly bringing catchy melodies and instrumentals amidst some unclean vocals, and similarly to the previous track, the vocals and their striking performance really get to shine throughout the rest of this song. “Daylight” brings lots of energy, driven by upbeat drums and bass riffs that make the verses even faster leading up to a pre-chorus that, once again, balances melody and aggression in the vocals, and the bridge is a lot heavier vocally, leading up to the song’s breakdown. “June” begins with hard-hitting instrumentals that pair up with the vocals to collectively deliver emotional performances right off the bat. The bass and drums drive the pre-chorus, which incorporates a bit of singing before the chorus, which contains a combination clean and unclean vocals. The EP concludes with the title track “In Passing,” and the instrumentals immediately bring lots of energy before the heavier vocals come in, putting on another emotion-filled performance throughout.
“In Passing” contains endless amounts of emotion within its honest lyrics, and the performances convey all that emotion perfectly, and overall, Bloom have created a very powerful and moving release.
Outloved “Be There For Me”
Outloved are a band that I’ve heard of in the past. Their latest EP, “Be There For Me,” was the first release I’ve checked out from them, and it was a really good first impression.
“Loveless” begins with softer instrumentals and vocals guiding its dark, eerie intro and bringing catchy riffs and melodies before more guitars and percussion come in shortly after to drive the rest of that section. The verse, similarly to the first part of the intro, is led by, but the hard-hitting instrumentals return in the chorus and especially during the bridge and ending later on, where the vocals get much more aggressive and pair up with these instrumentals to create a striking ending to this track, starting the EP off very strongly. “Blind & Falling” brings catchy composition early on as well, and the memorable hook in that section returns in the choruses. The bridge mixes things up a little bit, as it adds a bit more aggression to the track amidst the primarily melodic vocals and instrumentals throughout the rest of the track. “Dying To Leave” starts out with piano, synths and softer vocals before the drums build the track up to its huge chorus, where the vocals deliver some of the catchiest melodies and one of the most impressive overall performances on this EP, and the vocals continue to do that in the second verse as well while the song prepares for that chorus to return. “Hurt Me” starts off with more aggressive and energetic instrumentation, which brings a change of pace to the release, and while the verses are softer once again, they lead up to another anthemic chorus that cranks up the volume. The riff-driven bridge stood out to me as well, as it mixes in some heavier vocals, bringing even more aggression to the track before the final chorus comes in. “Let Go” is much slower and softer overall, aside from the chorus, where the vocals put on an emotional performance, and that chorus makes this track an even more powerful ballad. “Without You” begins similarly to some of the previous tracks, with a piano-led intro and softer verses before another massive chorus, but that chorus contains another impressive performance with lots of emotion, and this was a great choice for the closing track.
While these tracks definitely have some similarities and there is a bit of repetition regarding song structure, “Be There For Me” is still an intriguing debut EP with a good blend of genres within rock and heavier music.