Exclusive: Life On The Sideline EP announcement, music video premiere

Since releasing Honesty Is A Dying Breed two years ago, Life On The Sideline has remained active on the road and is now ready to unveil its upcoming EP, Never Settle. To kick things off, we're premiering the music video for the band's new single, "Echo", which tells the sad story of a young girl reminiscing times spent with her deceased partner. While not a pop punk song per se, it's as catchy as one with an infectious chorus that you'll inevitably get stuck in your head. The band's sound could be compared to that of Transit's and The Early November's. Fans can pre-order the EP on iTunes and CD here, before it's released on June 7th. […]

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Review: Avely - "Shatter"

Release InfoAvely - Shatter
Release Date: May 27th, 2014
Record Label: Unsigned
Buy: Digital

Western Massachusetts's quartet, Avely, has finally capitalized with a long-awaited full-length project in the form of Shatter, after releasing a string of EPs.

“Tongue Tie” signals the beginning of Shatter with a thunderous '90s-esque punk assault, leading listeners to the proverbial grimy waters. The bass-driven “Envy” is self-explanatory, indicative of detailing the dead-end discomfort of one of the ugliest tendencies and sins of human behaviour, which is notable in the afflicting vocalist/guitarist Jaime Dever, as he laments "Fill my cup to the top with envy, I wish that you were jealous just like me...".

The production on Shatter is flawless, filtering out every raw nuance of Avely’s sound in a pristine and polished fashion. The reverb in the walking bass line of “Fake Love” is an accurate bitter co-efficient to the uplifting refrain of the chorus, which is by far the most melodic moment on the record. On “Bleedout”, the thick hanging bass is apparent again, however in a reinvigorated spirit, where the band musically tips its hat off to modern punk legends, Bad Religion - here, Dever nails the roar of Greg Graffin perfectly. On the other hand, “Blame Me” comes across as filler and doesn’t segue smoothly from the exhilarating pace of “Bleedout”.

“Stop The Car” is an example of the inevitable timely mellow breather that's often found on punk-orientated records, where listeners are able to gain a glimpse into the softer counterpart of the Chicopee clan. The song is radiant, acting as Avely’s “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend”, as it were. The following track, “Numb”, is a moment where Avely becomes more determined than ever to sow the seeds of its infectious punk pop sensibility charm inside your head. The simplicity of the phrases within the chorus of "To be angry, to be real, to be selfish..." provide the space for listeners to find comfort to sing in sync with Dever. “Homesick” only keeps the melodic momentum afloat and parades it proudly on top of a solid foundation of the band’s musicianship, which is the tightest moment on the album thus far.

On “Revenge Therapy”, Avely gladly lets its hardcore/punk rock influences seep through once again (similarly on “Bleedout”), although the band emulates this sound well, it continuously runs the risk of disrupting the cohesiveness of the pop punk sound, which collectively bridges most of the tracks together. “Watch You Disappear” follows effortlessly from the aforementioned track and although it occasionally brandishes a classic punk rock-orientated sound, which is evident on the album, it is on this song where Avely is most successful in tailoring the sound to the distinctive merits of the band, and offers one of the best rhetoric-riddled one-liners where Dever states "I wrote your name in the fog on the window, so I could watch you disappear...".

The closer, “Caught In The Rain”, is a dark horse that is excessively reserved during the first verse, where only the muffled rings of guitar are audible, providing support to Dever’s hushed voice. However, it is during the latter half of the song where Avely boldly sends the remnants of its angst to the grave.

Shatter is an example of a clean-cut-produced punk record, however there are times when its success is ruined by alienated moments, which hider the potential flow.

1. Tongue Tie
2. Envy
3. Fake Love
4. Bleedout
5. Blame Me
6. Stop The Car
7. Numb
8. Homesick
9. Revenge Therapy
10. Watch You Disappear
11. Caught In The Sun

RIYL: My Everest-era The Swellers, Fingers Crossed, Bad Religion


More reviews by Aaron Akeredolu