Review Summary: "Here, Hear" is La Dispute's refusal to become stagnant.
La Dispute is an increasingly intriguing group, with each effort that's released, they slowly build and grow upon their talents and have slowly developed into a great force in post-hardcore music. They could easily flow along with the formulas they've found successful on past outings, but with their recent number of EPs they've done just the opposite. With the "Hear, Here." series they show that they refuse to become stagnant and have are gradually growing as a group. It inspires a nod in their direction for their musical persistence and skillful execution of each impressive release. The first in the aforementioned EP series is a fine example of this lively musical progression. They take bits and pieces of poetry and writings and add their own special touch to portray their artistic dexterity and it is indeed the group's refusal to become dull and repetitive.
An array of music is present throughout this short EP, with the group utilizing several different instruments and utensils to create a backdrop for Jordan Dreyer's spoken word poetry. With several poppy little noises present throughout "One" and the acoustic guitar keeping "Two" flowing, you never quite get the same instrumentation in the short four tracks. This is a pleasant (and necessary) touch to keep the record interesting and lively. I imagine it's difficult to capture attention with your entire project relying on one man speaking and a few more people playing timidly in the background. Fortunately for them, La Dispute does this nearly flawlessly, always holding my attention and piquing my interest in what Dreyer has to say. However, the band does slightly fall back into familiar trends with "Three" where we hear the whining vocals that has been ever-present throughout the group's works. Though it does feel slightly out of place, it doesn't turn the track entirely sour.
With the superb storytelling on "Four", you can get a basic idea of what the entirety of this EP will be. Dreyer says everything with a confident tinge and it really adds to the way the poetry is presented. However strange it may be for a group most known for their harsh shouts of "Tonight we ride!!!" to release an EP of spoken word poetry readings, it doesn't tarnish the quality that they remain consistent with. It's a clean, simple, and enjoyable release that can be enjoyed by many. With each interesting little noise and sporadic instrument addition throughout, "Hear, Here." presents itself as La Dispute's refusal to become stagnant. It's a breath of fresh air for anyone who might think this group has only one strongpoint, and it will show any naysayers that La Dispute are a force to be reckoned with.