Album – A Band of Hope – The Matches

Posted by admin on July 27th, 2008

Another great band from my friends at Epitaph, that’s way overdue for review. The Matches are a band, I’d not come across before. There’s a strong Emo feel to their music, but there is a much heavier rock sound underpinning everything, which was most welcoming, as I’ve become a little too Emo’d out of late. I actually had this album in for a few months, before I’d even got around to listening to it and my first listen, was unusually while riding the bus one morning.

I have to admit, listening to music while en-route somewhere, isn’t the best way to listen to new music, especially when you really want to pay attention to what you are hearing. The first couple of tracks provided a higher than usual level of ambient noise, but when the third and indeed title track “Wake The Sun” started, my ears pricked up and I was hooked. This track reminds me of a more Britpop, come Killers sound and this is certainly a direction I was hoping the rest of the album would take. However nothing could have been further away from this, with the track that followed “Darkness Rising” with it’s very theatrical, almost operatic vibe. “To Build a Mountain” goes off in another totally different direction, and you almost get the sense that the band are toying with you, not in a malicious sense, but more of a band that wants to push the envelope a bit.

“Clouds Crash” is one of the more relaxed tracks on the album. It’s a great acoustic guitar driven track, with some nice subtle violin backing, which kind of reminds me a bit of Green Day’s, “Good Riddance [Time of Your Life]”. “Between Halloweens”, contrasts the previous track being more upbeat and intense, and I can’t help but sense the band having fun, something that really shines through and is always a real pleasure to hear.

The penultimate track, “Yankee in a Chip Shop”, has real punk feel, but with a more pop delivery. I can imagine the band really let go with this track in a live performance and couldn’t help but wish they’d have done so more with the studio recording. “Proctor Rd.” is a peculiar track, that finishes off the album. It’s dark and very short track, being a tad over a minute. Not really too sure about this as an album ender, preferring I think something a bit more dramatic, but it’s OK, I guess.

With 14 tracks on the album, this is real treasure trove of great rock, with heavy pop/punk overtones. There’s a few tracks that are more mainstream pop than rock, but that’s OK, as those tracks provide a nice counter balance to the more rock, and diverse tracks.

Conclusion : Thanks again to Epitaph for this unsolicited submission to Indie Launchpad. This would probably have not otherwise have been a band I would have enquired about, so I’m all the more thankful, as this is a tremendous album and most certainly puts The Matches firmly on my list of bands to watch out for in the future.

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