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. […]

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Review: Courtesy Drop - "Stabilize" EP

Release InfoCourtesy Drop - Stabilize EP
Release Date: October 28th, 2014
Record Label: Animal Style Records
Pre-order: Vinyl

It’s no secret that Courtesy Drop isn’t a conventional post-hardcore band, and their newest project, Stabilize, stands as a testament to their originality. The EP’s range of tones takes listeners on a stylistic journey, all the while adding the band’s distinct color into each song.

“The Eighth Gate” commences with a slow, brooding guitar and adds layers to the opening tune as the song progresses. The first few moments allow listeners to appreciate the track’s instrumental artistry and maturity, while a sudden drum addition adds intensity and takes the song on a post-hardcore turn. While the track features two polar styles, it blends them effortlessly. Indie-reminiscent guitars, emotional vocals, and heavy drums make for a combination that shouldn’t make sense but does, in a surprisingly complementary way.

“Orion” both maintains the band’s post-hardcore roots and simultaneously introduces new elements to their sound. The track seamlessly transitions from heavy drum and guitars into slower vocals, slipping in and out of different tones and genres. Frank lyricism like “Take everything for what it is and not for what it could have been” give the song an introspective and straightforward personality, and a soft-backing harmony lines the song with a touch of sensitivity.

Not only does Courtesy Drop add to and improve upon their more familiar styles, they also venture into noticeably different territory as well. Aptly titled, “Space And Interaction,” has a hazy sound that creates an abstract, spacey atmosphere that complements another surprising element—an airy duet. Going from reflective to melancholy to harsh and raw, the atmosphere continuously shifts until it stops altogether with a lasting reverb at the end.

“Beauty Is In The Eye Of The Imperfect” is a perfect track for those who want a fast, driving song from start to finish. Simply put, its hard beat, heavy rifts, and emotional vocals are a recipe for a success. Though the familiar style can easily make it boring, impressive layering and inventive rifts add a complexity that sets it apart from predictable songs.
The EP finishes with “Pegasus”, the mellowest song of the project. With the smooth introduction of drums and layers of guitars, frontman Paul Chalos’ thoughtful voice, and a guitar-heavy ending, this track shines the spotlight on the band’s technical and musical sensitivity and development.

Stabilize is a musical road trip through new sounds and experimentations that may first catch listeners by surprise, but will surely draw them for the ride. Through an improved and impressive musical artistry, Courtesy Drop marries dichotomies of genres together and produces a unexpectedly cohesive project that will make listeners rethink why there are rigid lines between genres in the first place.

1. The Eighth Gate
2. Orion
3. Space And Interaction
4. Beauty Is In The Eyes Of The Imperfect
5. Pegasus

RIYL: Cursive, Mineral, Death Cab For Cutie, Jets To Brazil


More reviews by Rosie Baek