#NewMusicFriday: March 15th 2024

#NewMusicFriday March 15th

I’ll admit, on paper, there aren’t many releases this #NewMusicFriday that instantly jump out at you. However, if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find some noteworthy releases. Amongst them is the long-awaited debut full-length from Grieving. While they’re far from being a household name, their brand of well-executed post-hardcore and emo is sure to win over admirers, including us.

There are also fleeting returns for Comeback Kid and Greywind, who both deliver EPs today. Elsewhere, Scott Stapp steps away from the Creed comeback trail with his latest solo effort – ‘Higher Power’. Power metal outfit DragonForce once again deliver an arsenal of squealing guitar solos and nerd-filled lyrical references on ‘Warp Speed Warriors’. Gouge Away return to deliver a hardcore onslaught with ‘Deep Sage’.

On the heavier side of things, there’s the debut album from Swiss electro-rockers Nonexister. Abrasive metalcore mob Indevth show their relentless side with ‘Drowning’. Whereas ‘Ombra’ from Italian progressive death metal outfit The Moor sees them explore electronica. Finally, Belgium’s Aborted put their death metal spin on a series of horror movie classics.

Photo Credit: Luana Martignon

Grieving – Everything Goes Right, All At Once

Cambridge quartet Grieving have been biding their time, even if unwillingly, with delivering ‘Everything Goes Right, All At Once’. Nevertheless, their debut album was worth the wait. Honing in a hook-laden, post-hardcore that equally lends itself to DC punk as it does to 90’s emo, with a British tone reminiscent of Hundred Reasons and Hell Is For Heroes.

From the outset, ‘Brian Emo’ captures the melodic drive Grieving can execute. Its momentum is carried through into ’10 x Michelangelo’. As guitars ring out, textured drum fills and a pulsating bass complements its overall urgency. From there on in, you’re hooked by the tight musical scope that Grieving produces.

‘Tarpaulin’ hypnotic guitars lean into the lyrical uncertainty on show. Likewise. ‘Old Wives’ closes the album at a sharp and stodgy pace as off-kilter pull-offs thrive with a confident pluckiness. On the evidence of ‘Wiseau’, and ‘Pristine’, Grieving‘s bread and butter is surging emotional post-hardcore. It thrives in building up to radiant payoffs, yet is grounded by a fitting rawness.

Although tracks such as ‘My Friend, The Ghost’ and ‘Start Young’ will be familiar to longtime followers, they are far from being jarred in for good measure. The former breezily strolls in, allowing the guilt-ridden narrative to take centre stage across its five-minute runtime. As for ‘Start Young’, it’s a sharp blast of post-hardcore with raw vocals and twisting riffs countering the weathered rhythmic drive. Another older cut, ‘Ownership’, is delivered with bass-heavy grittiness, allowing tight-knit guitar melodies to hypnotise you momentarily, before merging into another punk-spirited chorus.

There is no doubt Grieving wears their influences on their collective sleeves, yet ‘Everything Goes…’ subtly allows them to sonically expand their sound. It’s eleven songs are threaded together by a mutual love of those who have come before them, however Grieving are purely intimators. ‘Everything Goes…’ allows them to carve out an identity through earnest lyricism, and stylistic growth.

Comeback Kid
Photo Credit: Aaron Schwartz

Comeback Kid – Trouble

For Comeback Kid, it only takes four songs over 12 minutes to remind you of their frenzied raw power. The Canadian hardcore mob have been going strong for 20 years,

‘Trouble In The Winner’s Circle’ arrives with hefty guitars and popping drums, leading the way to a high-octane chorus. ‘Disruption’ pounds its way through with rumbling verses, yet it’s the distorted hardcore punk guitars that take over. ‘Chompin’ At The Bit’s low-end throbs early on before stiff guitars charge forward into the verse. However, its major chord-led chorus radiantly takes, even though Andrew Neufeld’s stinging vocals are maintained. Segueing into ‘Breaking and Bruised’Comeback Kid save the best till last. Fist-pumping gang vocals, chugging bass lines, rumbling drums, and an unhinged Neufeld allow the quintet to flourish.

Even though these four tracks could easily be seen as a stop-gap between albums, it’s allowed Comeback Kid to present a subtle evolution in their sound. For example, ‘Disruption’ bites with its street punk exterior, and ‘Breaking and Bruised’ utilises “woah” harmonies. Collectively, it’s an all-too-brief reminder of Comeback Kid‘s short and sharp ability to provide fun and ferocious songs.

Photo Credit: Josiah Van Dien

Greywind – Antidote

Greywind‘s return to considerable relevance has been a journey of ups and downs. With the industry machine behind their emergence six years ago long gone, the Irish sibling duo return with a renewed outlook. ‘Antidote’ sees them showcasing their brand of alt/emo-rock to the best of their ability.

Past singles ‘Swing and Swag’ and ‘Antidote’ set the standard early on. Steph O’Sullivan’s powerful vocals supercharge the powerful hooks. ‘Deathwish’ is executed with a grandeur tone with Paul O’Sullivan’s edgier guitar and Steph’s distressed lyrics. It’s a much-welcome change in tone, allowing Greywind to add a dramatic flair to their broadly melodic sound. As the closing number ‘You’re My Medicine’ shows, the combination of Steph’s impressive voice and Paul’s bold sound is where Greywind‘s strengths lie. Yet it’s countered by ‘Glimmer’, which comes off as somewhat formulaic and forgettable, despite being executed with urgency.

If there is one thing that ‘Antidote’ shows is that Greywind have confidentially picked themselves up, and matured as songwriters. Their experiences, and all of the uncertainty they went through, have allowed them to write honest songs.

Whether they’re able to sustain this renewed interest is yet to be seen, however, ‘Antidote’ has provided Greywind with a handful of impactful songs that is sure to find an audience.

Photo Credit: Dustin J Watson

Bedbug – pack your bags the sun is growing

Listening to ‘pack your bags the sun is growing’, the new album from indie/emo quartet Bedbug, you wouldn’t consider them to be based out of sun-soaked LA. Nevertheless, having evolved out of a bedroom project of frontperson Dylan Gamez Citron, this is their fourth full-length.

Citing genre stalwarts Built To Spill and Cap’n Jazz amongst their influences, ‘pack your bags…’ allows Citron and company to evolve. While the lo-fi roughness remains (see ‘Halo On The Interstate’), twinkling guitars and lyrical earnestness serve as the album’s main musical well. ‘Postcard’ and ‘Leave Your Things, The Stars Are Returning’ serve as fine examples of this, highlighting Bedbug‘s breezy and tender style.

One issue with this style is that even though Bedbug are consistent, their timid nature can send songs such as ‘Seasons On The New Coast’ into an unfortunate lull. Yet ‘The Great Bonfire’ hints of urgency with its galloping pacing. Furthermore, ‘Sunset (finale)’ offers a brief gang singalong before transitioning into a sea of spacy synths.

On paper, ‘pack your bags the sun is growing’ sounds promising, yet Bedbug struggle to develop an identity of their own. Instead, it’s a record that leans too hard into its influences, resulting in a middling record that offers a handful of memorable tracks.

What is out on #NewMusicFriday?

Comeback Kid – Trouble
Night Verses – Every Sound Has A Colour in the Valley of the Night (Part 2)
Scott Stapp – Higher Power
DragonForce – Warp Speed Warriors
Kid Kapichi – There Goes The Neighbourhood
Grieving – Everything Goes Right, All At Once
Greywind – Antidote
Gouge Away – Deep Sage
Nonexister – Demons
Indevth – Drowning
Windwaker – Enter the Wall
Cory Wells – Harboring The Hurt I’ve Caused
Bedbug – pack your bags the sun is growing
The Black Crowes – Happiness Bastards
Chris Shiflett – Starry Nights & Campfire Lights
The Dandy Warhols – Rockmaker
Mad Caddies – Arrows Room 117
Spoken – Reflection
Crushed – Extra Life
The Moor – Ombra
Aborted – Vault Of Horrors
Crooked Little Sons – Regenerate
Pink Milk – Night On Earth
Chase Tremaine – Unfall II
Downswing – Let This Life Devour You
Simulakra – Reincarnation
Sweat – Love Child
Boeckner – Boeckner!

If you think I’ve missed something or have a new album/EP/song to tell us about, tell us about it here.

If you’re looking for the latest tracks focusing on rock, punk, hardcore, metal, emo, and everything in between, then check out our ‘Newish Music’ playlist on Spotify or Apple Music.


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