Rapid Fire Reviews: 7/22

Posted: by Steven Lalonde

Trade Wind – You Make Everything Disappear

Trade Wind released their debut EP Suffer Just to Believe back in 2014 and at the time, many – myself included – didn’t think that the band would last. Now, 2 years later, the band is back with their first full-length You Make Everything Disappear, demonstrating every intention that they’re here to stay. What started as a side-project between frontman Jesse Barnett (Stick To Your Guns) and guitarist Tom Williams (Stray From The Path) has blossomed into a darker and more personal driven approach in comparison to Suffer Just to Believe. Much of the full length’s production and sound allow one to draw comparisons to behemoth bands such as Deftones and Thrice. What caught my attention when I first listened was Williams’ ominous guitar tones. Couple this with the intense pounding rhythms of drummer Andrew McEnaney (ex-Structures) and bassist Randy LeBeouf, and you’ve got the foundation for Jesse Barnett’s vocals to shine, as he showcases his range, combining subtle delicate harmonies with the ever-forceful roars that I and Stick To Your Guns fans will recognize and should come to expect at this point. Certain tracks such as “Untitled” and “Je t’aimerais tourjours” even manage to incorporate soft piano and acoustic guitars, showing that the bands desire to keep and open mind and expand musically. Overall, the album is a definite step in the right direction, demonstrating a growth in maturity as well as expansiveness with all 8 songs carrying a seemingly heavy weight and purpose. Although it only comprises of 8 songs, You Make Everything Disappear manages to blend a sense of despair and somberness that will no doubt leave listeners deep in thought throughout the entire work.

Score: 7.75/10

Mikey Erg – Tentative Decisions

Mikey Erg, virtuoso of the pop-punk genre, already has an impressive resume which spans The Dopamines, The Unlovables and of course – most famously – The Ergs!. But now, in 2016, Mikey Erg embarked on something he’s never done before, put out a solo album. One might think that it must be relatively difficult for a musician as decorated as Erg to write something new and somewhat original. Given all the catchy hooks, slashing guitar riffs and sometimes goofy lyrical devices that he’s already heard or written a bajillion times already, Erg manages to step up his game and step out of his comfort zone with Tentative Decisions. The album sees Erg dive into deeper, more personal darker issues in some cases, yet manages to blend those components with the classic pop-punk song structure that is verse – chorus – verse – chorus etc. and throw in the occasional bridge. As simple and generic as that sounds, I still adore it to death. The album starts with “Faulty Metaphor” beginning with an infectious guitar hook that carries throughout the entire album and ends with a 4-minute lo-fi “NyQuil and Sudafed” demonstrating Ergs ability to keep things interesting. Overall, much of the album resonates of past The Ergs! Albums, yet it’s difficult to simply say this album is a “pop-punk” record, because it’s so much more. All I know, is that, whether The Ergs! are done (or not), Mikey wants you to know, he’s here to stay.

Score: 8/10

Yung – A Youthful Dream

Hailing from Aarhus Denmark comes the D.I.Y. punk band Yung. Led by frontman Mikkel Holm Silkjær, who has spent the better part of his teenage years growing up playing in different punk/hardcore bands in Denmark, with the apparent motive to piss off his dad. The attitude that Silkjaer brings is what makes Yung the band it is, as they and Silkjaer aspire to lead the new brigade of Scandenavian punk scene. I got to be honest, when I first listened to A Youthful Dream all the way through, I thought that Yung sounded as if they had only been playing together for a couple of days. However, the more I listened, the more it grew on me. When one considers the 2 EPs the band released in 2015, Alter and These Thoughts Are Like Mandatory Chores, there is a definite step up in terms of orchestration and diversity — given the presence of pianos, harmonies and at some points horn instruments. When you first begin the album, there’s almost this sense of disorganization that may or may not turn you off. This is best represented with the track “Uncombed Hair,” which is not only aptly titled, but may very well exemplify the haphazard nature of the band, let alone the album. If I were to describe it, it’s like they wanted to sound off-key on purpose, but in retrospect, it’s masterfully produced to blend seamlessly.  The garage-rock sound is pieced together perfectly, considering there’s a “stop-go-stop-go” element between the guitars and drums that controls the pace of the entire album and allows for the weaving in and out between fast-paced and slow-motion. Vocally and lyrically, Silkjaer impresses as he delivers emotional, personal yet profound lyrics, in a fashion that’s the perfect mix of raw and passionate. All in all, if you’re going to listen, don’t settle after the first listen, give it another go or two like I did because this may very well end up on my top 10 of the year when it’s all said and done.

Score: 8.75/10