Real Friends release "Composure"

Real Friends a pop punk band from Tinley Park, Illinois brings their fans their new album "Composure", the bands third studio full length album, releasing on July 13th 2018. The band will also be on the Vans Warped Tour this year for it's final cross country run. 

This album is extremely relatable. From the opening track through the closer its easy to connect with the content. The album is a very honest touching on subjects such as unrequited love, failed relationships, and perhaps most importantly mental health. 

"Me First" is the opening track and instantly hooks the listener with lyrics about being a second choice instead of the top priority. The song asks "Why don't you put me first for once", a question most people have asked. This will be a track that has a lot of fan interaction when played live. Several opportunities for chanting. 

"From The Outside" is one of the song's that I connected with personally. "From the outside I seem fine" are lyrics that really resonate. Dan's lyrics in this song detail the struggles of his bi-polar disorder. Keeping up an appearance on the outside to the people around him that he is alright, but on the inside battling himself. Whether intentional or not this song will be an anthem for those who suffer from depression and mental illness. 

The title track "Composure" is a song of self assurance and about working to get yourself back. Its about making some compromises for those around you. Regaining the ability to be in social settings. 

"Get By" is one of my favorite tracks on the album. A classic Pop Punk callout. "You'll get by, while I get better" shifting the focus to working on yourself, and getting better. Mentally and emotionally. It's ok to be a little selfish sometimes and this song is unapologetically focused on a failed relationship and getting better after the breakup. 

Closing out the album is "Take A Hint". This is a great wrap up track, giving the feeling of acceptance. "We're willingly lost" are words that will hit home to anyone that has felt like they don't know where they are going or what direction to take in life but being content in what they are doing. 

Overall this album has a great mix of styles and honest lyrics. Whether you are a fan of old albums, or just now finding Real Friends this will be an album to play loud with the windows down. Play it with your friends, or when you are reflecting on life by yourself. Be sure to check out Real Friends on tour as well, they will be Vans Warped Tour all summer for the final cross country run. 

 

The Material Returns With ‘Gray States’

The Material have returned, after nearly 5 years, with their new EP "Gray States". Getting their first big break on the Moutain Dew Breakout in 2007. The Material has been featured on MTV and MTV2 and their song "Moving to Seattle" is also available to download for the video game, Rock Band. Lead singer, Colleen D’Agostino, has also worked with Deadmau5 on “Drop  The Poptart” and “Stay”.

The One That Got Away is the first single from the EP is a strong showing. The song lyrically speaks of regret, not taking chances on someone. Musically if you were a fan of The Material when they were around before this song will strike a chord right away. (pun intended)

Give Anything is one that stands out to me. It is an anthem for anyone that feels like they've been stuck reaching for something that they couldn't get. The song talks about feeling like you would give anything to get to what you're after.

Closing out the EP is Mistakes. Its a song that begs for acceptance, and forgiveness. The song also speaks of the importance of another. This song is incredibly powerful for anyone that has been through a similar situation. 

This EP is a great teaser and is sure to bring in new fans as well as hyping past fans up from r the future of the band. Be sure to check the album out and let us know what you think.  

 

Hawthorne Heights has released Bad Frequencies, this is the first full length album from the band since 2013, and it is definitely worth the wait. Many people will remember the band for The Silence In Black and White, and If Only You Were Lonely. The album was released by Pure Noise Records on April 27th, 2018, you can pick up your copy here.

Opening with, “In Gloom”, an upbeat sad reflection track. The tempo and riffs are counterintuitive for the lyrical base of the track. But it all works, bringing together a faster melody and somewhat vintage emo lyrics blend together beautifully in this track.

“Pink Hearts” takes its shot next. This will be one of the more popular songs live. It just has an energy and sound that is going to lend to a great time for fans to dance, jump, and sing along at the top of their lungs.

Skylark is an up tempo track that will remind listeners of the "Fragile Futures" album. This throwback is sure to keep the listeners attention to the album.

Perhaps the most emo song on the album is The Suicide Mile. Lyrics talking about reflecting on years past, and spending sleepless nights next to a loaded gun, it is a reminder that nobody is exempt or safe from depression. The band has talked about mental health quite a bit over the course of their career and have been advocates of talking to people, seeking help, and pushing forward.

This album is a strong showing from the band. Bringing emo circa 2005 back. Hawthorne Heightshave put out an album that is sure to bring them back into the light of many people that may have forgotten about them over the past couple of years. 

 

Make The Best Of It -- Have Mercy

 

Baltimore’s emo act Have Mercy has gone through some drastic changes since founding a over half a decade ago. Only a fraction of the band, which began as a standard rock quartet of guitar, bass, drums, and vocals, now remains. Swindle is the only founding member still playing under the moniker. After listening to this album in its entirety the question that will be on your mind is simple, "Why aren't they bigger by now?". Make The Best Of It is a deep album dealing with themes of family, emotional vulnerability, and both metaphorical and physical death. 

The first standout track on the album is "Drive", an extremely catchy and relatable track. Late night drives with someone you care about but then something changes and they move on and find someone new while you are left reminiscing. "Coexist" follows up telling the story of how people change as life moves forward. He sings of romances that either fell apart or never had a chance to exist at all, and how time can change people and tear them apart. 

One of the most fun tracks is, "Reaper." Upbeat and edgy pop vocals this track talks about cutting and the brake lines of the new boyfriend's Camaro. This track is definitely going to be a sing a long track. One of the closing tracks is "Good Christian Man." A more melodic and melancholy track with some gritty vocals. Possibly the track that will feel the most familiar to longtime fans of the band. 

This album will not just give listeners another angsty emo album, but gives people a record that feels like it’s talking to them directly, establishing that there are others that have gone through turmoil in their day to day lives and that it eventually becomes better once again.