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Living With Lions – Some Of My Friends Appear Dead To Me

Becci Stanley

Triangle

After making a real mark on the pop punk scene with Holy Shit, the Canadian mob are back with a short release but brilliant release nonetheless shaking the shackles of mediocre same-old pop punk and burst out with this release, hailing to the roots of pop punk itself.

Opening track Scarred begins with muted guitars before you are thrown into a storm of quick paced roaring guitars and stomping drums, yet the storm blows over quickly as the melody suddenly takes over with the instrumentals all thoroughly tamed and working at one with the vocals, silencing as the E.Ps title is sang out sending a chill down your spine. The bass line also comes into the spotlight at various times in this track adding a sludgy edge to the otherwise melodic mix, heaving reminiscent of bands like Less Than Jake and Zebrahead.

My Winter Vacation starts with said baseline in an almost ska-fashion before diving into a slow, sombre ode similar to The Smashing Pumpkins with whining, heart-rendering vocals with driving, powerful yet carefully crafted and controlled instrumentals throughout. Though seemingly repetitive, different additions of more guitars and vocals create a steadily brooding and building track that although it is not outright loud and dominating, it slowly reaches a powerful and poignant climax more satisfying than that from an obviously atmospheric release.

Closing track Between The Lines intro would not be out of place on a hardcore record with a doom-hailing baseline and steadily rising drum beat then plunges into a stereotypically pop punk track, though this does not mean it is boring, not even in the slightest, the music steadily weaves from light guitar chords and a slow-moving pass to aforementioned hardcore, visceral edge, it even drifts into the psychedelic with lucid guitar hooks reminiscent of grunge and funk mashed into one. It’s a weird mix altogether this track and therefore the perfect ending to the E.P.

After listening to this release, I was saddened it was such a short release after the wow factor that was released in such a short burst. This E.P really shows how far the bad have come since Holy Shit and that they are not just a flash in the pan band, they are here for the long haul ready to develop their sound, develop as a band and create records you are going to love!

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