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. […]

Friday, October 3, 2014

Review: Second To Last - "Open House" EP

Release InfoSecond To Last - Open House EP
Release Date: October 14th, 2014
Record Label: True Records
Pre-order: Digital/CD

Open House deviates from Second To Last’s previous styles, but it definitely doesn’t disappoint. In fact, the EP’s divergence from their past work exposes the band’s deeper, more reflective side and stands as a testament to their growth since the debut EP, Mark Approved.

Songs like “Dressed In Black” and “Skin” showcase artistic development. “Dressed In Black” expresses the consequences of broken family—a commonplace topic in the pop punk genre—in an interesting and abstract approach. Its more typical lyrics like “All I want is to be loved and give love back”, could have easily made it another stereotypical pop punk song, but the creative and thoughtful zinger “You should have showed up to the wedding dressed in black” makes for a refreshing and lyrically charming track. “Skin” best exhibits the band’s musical development; the song’s underlying upbeat style is reminiscent of older tracks like "Eulogy", but the continuously shifting guitar and drum patterns make it more dynamic and explorative than its predecessors.

The EP’s more reflective songs like “Your Couch” and “Right Direction” highlight the band’s personal, individual evolutions as well. “We both know punk rock doesn’t pay” and “I just want to be myself ‘cause I’m just sick of everyone else” describe the many frustrations of adolescence struggles with identity, disappointment in reality, and uncertainty of the future—with an unapologetic bluntness that allows “Your Couch” to connect and resonate with listeners on a raw, honest level.

Open House is the most mellowed-out work the band has released yet, and its tracks are the perfect soundtrack for the transition into dusky fall nights. This EP marks the ripening of the band’s artistic, lyrical, musical, and personal identity. Though not without moments of lyrical predictability, Open House demonstrates Second To Last’s burgeoning maturity and a strong promise of even better projects to come.

1. Dressed In Black
2. Right Direction
3. Without You (In The Worst Way)
4. Skin
5. Your Couch

RIYL: Smalls, Basement, Such Gold


More reviews by Rosie Baek