Here are the top 4 tracks for the week of June 21-27.
Haunt Me – To Speak of Wolves
To Speak of Wolves went on a hiatus of sorts from 2012-2016, coming back with an EP last year that was really good. Since then, they’ve re-signed with SolidState Records, announced a new album, and dropped this single. And I’m really digging the mid-2000’s metalcore feel that they’re putting out with this stuff. They’ve got a lot of different rhythms going on in this song, which makes it a much different song from a straight forward metal song. This song really kicks in with one minute left, where they do two separate breakdowns back-to-back, which takes some serious skill. There’s no question that they share a connection to Underoath, as it’s very UO-esque. Phil, the drummer, is Spencer Chamberlain’s younger brother. It’s great to have these guys back in full force, and this song shows that though they’ve spent some time away, they still can put out great music.
RIYL: Norma Jean, Underoath, The Overseer
Super Natural – Turnover
Turnover put out my favourite album of the year in 2015, so to say I was anticipating this single is an understatement. And boy, did it live up. While Peripheral Vision was an exploration into indie dream pop for the band, this single takes it one step further, jumping into far more hazy, ambient shoegaze. Though many wish they had stayed a pop-punk band, I’m happy they departed from that to create this type of music as it’s extremely original. The dreamy guitar kicks the track off, quickly layered by another guitar noodling in a different direction. The entire feeling of this song is as if I was watching the world through 30mm film from the 80s. I think this album will be just as good, if not better, than Peripheral Vision was. If you like summer, hanging on the beach, or just living life relaxed, this is the music for you.
RIYL: Real Estate, Beach Fossils, Mac DeMarco
Mercy Is Asleep At The Wheel – The Movielife
The triumphant return of the Movielife is finally here. After nearly 15 years without new music, Vinnie got the band back together and they’re making new music. Though they’ve been touring again for the past few years on and off, this is the first song they’ve released, along with signing to Rise Records. While you might not know who The Movielife is, pretty much all the bands I like from the scene are here because of bands like this and others. With that said, this song sounds like they never missed a beat. It’s heavy enough, poppy enough, and builds into this great climax right at the end. Whether you know who The Movielife is or not, one thing is for sure: this is a great song. The chorus is really great, and shows the maturity and songwriting experience Vinnie has. The guitar work is fantastic, from little riffs right under the surface to the driving chords with just the right amount of grain in them. I’m excited for this whole album to drop, and this single is a great way to start it all off.
RIYL: The Starting Line, Taking Back Sunday, The Swellers
The Light, The Fire – Novelists
Novelists have always flown just under the radar for me. I’ve known about them, heard a few songs here and there, but they never really grabbed me. This song, along with their signing to SharpTone Records, changed that for me. It’s funny, because when I look at the YouTube comment section for this song, there’s a lot of people wishing for the old sound back, and yet this is the first song I’ve heard by them that really grabbed me. Goes to show that no matter what you do, you can’t make everyone happy. That being said, something I really noticed is the improvement in vocals. This guy has a powerful clean voice, and it shines through in this song. It’s unique from many in the genre, with some great timbre and weight to it instead of high pitched or nasally vocals. Around half way through, the song really picks up, and the instruments begin to shine. Instead of the usual chug-chug, the instruments really take in their craft, creating something more original for the verses, all accumulating into a great song. There isn’t the usual big breakdown, instead going for heavy moments throughout the song, and it really adds up into a more memorable song. This band shows maturity and understanding in the softer moments, not feeling weird about having some quiet in their song. Overall, a great single, and I’m looking forward to what comes next.