Hey peoples. It’s me again. I’m gonna drop one last column on you before I head out to vacation this week. Friday afternoon, to be exact. By Saturday afternoon, I’ll be dipping my feet in the Atlantic Ocean in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. A couple quick notes before I move on. First off, the news came to us from John last week that Baloola Palooza.com was now legally licensed and all writings contained on the site are legally protected. They are for non-profit, public use as long as credit is given to us. That’s great news, if you ask me. It gives the site a bigger sense of professionalism, and it protects our hard work from being stolen from others and written off as their own. Also, I would like to welcome the people who read these columns week after week (I’ve seen the stats, I know you’re reading), and have yet to join the Baloola Palooza forums to do so now. We’ve got several different forums to chat in; music, politics, movies/television/sports, video games, and the newly added art forum. We’ve got all sorts of different people on the boards, different backgrounds, different interests, etc. Oh, and we’ve got Richard Kane. Feel free to harass him a bit when you get over there, he doesn’t mind. But seriously, head on over to the forums and sign up, introduce yourself, and have a hell of a time with us. Now on with the column….
Hawthorne Heights – The Silence In Black And White
2004 Victory Records
Hawthorne Heights, could they be victims of their own hype? When your label promotes you as the next Thursday or Taking Back Sunday, they’re definitely giving you rather large shoes to fill. Did they succeed? Well, for starters, these guys definitely own a copy of “Screamo For Dummies” and they follow the guidelines well. Let’s go down the list, shall we? Singer with a voice just a few notches above whiny. Check. Guy who can scream like a banshee, yet still play an instrument. Check. Cliche emo lyrics such as “she cried all night, until the salt from her tears rusted shut her eyes.” Check. Don’t get me wrong, while it seems like most bands within this genre follow the same formula, I’m still a sucker for it and enjoy it very much.
This album is very much like an emotional roller coaster. Offering up softer, heartfelt vocals one second and brutal, anger-filled screams the next. While all of the songs have a sound and personality of their own, most tend to follow the same sing/scream formula. If that’s not what you’re into, then this album is definitely not for you. They do feature a good mix of tempos on the album. They have the heavier songs such as Silver Bullet, Life On Standby, and Speeding Up The Octaves to keep the kids in the mosh pits satisfied. Then they have softer songs like Niki FM, Dissolve and Decay, and Screenwriting An Apology, for the kids up front to sing along with. One thing that I was expecting to set this band apart from other bands within the genre is that they were billed as a “triple guitar attack.” Listening to the album though, it’s really hard to tell there are three guitars in there. One would expect the music to be much more powerful and guitar driven. This disappointed me a bit. Not that the guitar work isn’t good, but I feel they should’ve taken advantage of the three guitars and really make them stand out. Aside from that, this is a very solid debut from this Dayton, Ohio band. While I will admit they’re not exactly opening up any new doors in the world of screamo, they’ll definitely make a nice addition to it. Are they ready to step into the shoes of bands like Thursday and Taking Back Sunday? Maybe they should keep them in the box for a bit and eventually they’ll grow into them. You can catch the band on tour this summer with Silverstein and Alexisonfire, as well as at Hellfest.
Recommended tracks: Ohio Is For Lovers, Life On Standby, Niki FM
Recommended if you like:
Taking Back Sunday
Story Of The Year
According to the latest issue of Alternative Press, NOFX have another album on the way. Judging by the title, it sounds like a greatest hits album, but who knows with these guys. It’s called The Best Songs Ever Written(By Us) and is due out August 24 on Epitaph Records.
Speaking of the latest issue of AP. It features two great interviews this month. One with Bad Religion and the other with Lars Frederiksen & The Bastards. Both make it worthwhile to pick up the magazine. I don’t know if it’s on news stands yet though, because mine magically appears in my mail box every month.
I downloaded a couple new tracks from Christian hardcore band, Zao. Truly, Truly, This Is The End and The Rising End(The Last Prophecy) are both from their new album, titled The Funeral Of God. The album will be released on July 13 on Ferret Records and is a concept record, which bases itself on “If God decided, based on the way humans react to him, to let himself die and not be a part of it anymore.” The concept sounds interesting, and the new songs sound great. Count me in.
Heard of the FMA, or Federal Marriage Amendment? If you haven’t, you must’ve been living in seclusion for the past few months. Basically, our “God appointed” President is a homophobic bigot who thinks he has the right to decide who people can and can’t marry. The bastard wants to change the Constitution to deny gays the right to marry! Now whether or not you agree with homosexuality isn’t the issue here. It’s not a gay issue, it’s not a straight issue and it’s not a religious beliefs issue. It’s a human rights issue! Don’t you find it odd that our country is bragged about for our freedoms, yet slowly and surly they’re taking that freedom away from us? So if you want to say YES to human rights and a big FUCK YOU to discrimination, head on over to the Human Rights Campaign site and let your senator know how you feel. It takes only a minute to fill out your info, and the rest is taken care of for you. The government has gotten away with a lot fucked up things here recently, don’t let them get away with this too!
Thank you for reading. Until next time, I’m out.