Leeds quintet Day Old Hate state they fall into a growing group of bands that are likened to Mallory Knox and Young Guns. You have to admire their honesty as their sophomore EP, ‘First Light’, is perfectly moulded in the sound and tone of those bands.
Over the course of five songs, DOH produce a range of well-polished, energetic rock with soaring choruses sprinkled throughout. Although that sounds promising on paper, Day Old Hate find themselves in the position of being one of dozens (if not hundreds) of bands of their kind.
The title track opens the EP and sees the five-piece set out their stall with driving guitars with favourable vocals from Oliver Swift, who shows he’s more than capable holding his own throughout the EP. It provides a rush of adrenaline to kickstart the five songs on offer, but it is outweighed by a sense of familiarity.
As the band settle into their stride with songs like ‘Secrets’ and ‘Fifteen’, you begin to hear DOH are a tight-knit unit yet stylistically they fall into a safety zone, coming off as ineffective and formulaic.
‘Minutes, Hours, Days’ highlights DOH’s tendency to provide big, poppy hooks with its bombastic chorus and equally boisterous lead guitar. A thoroughly energetic number that serves as a stand out track. The EP is tied up with ‘Don’t Chase Me’ which plays off the soft, atmospheric verse into a bursting, uplifting chorus format. Structurally its effective but, like DOH’s style in general, it’s been done plenty of times before.
Although they’ve delivered an abundance of big, favourable chorus, ‘First Light’ as a whole comes off as pretty routine which is a shame for Day Old Hate. For a melodic alt-rock band, they tick all the right boxes yet so do many others. In conclusion ‘First Light’ fails to develop a solid, lasting identity.
‘First Light’ EP by Day Old Hate is released on February 12th.
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)