Have Heart
Songs to Scream at the Sun


3.0
good

Review

by Serpento USER (12 Reviews)
June 19th, 2010 | 16 replies | 4,059 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Come listen to the ballad of a brocore band that doesn’t have (or necessarily need) bros.

1 of 2 thought this review was well written

One of the most noteworthy and personally enjoyable features to ever appear on this site, to me, is not one of the multitudes of interviews, stands above the Kanye backlash, and even ousts the treatise on copyright law; it is Chan’s tongue-in-cheek “Brocore: An Introspective.” See, growing up in a distant suburb of New York City, you experience all the aspects of bro culture, and this article nailed them hard. From the dinosaur tees to the drunken chants of WE ARE FAMILY, it’s eternally around you, and keeps coming back like some sort of weird talking ooze. Even worse, every corner of the planet vomits up its own brand of “brocore” for the boys in the 'insert cul-de-sac name here' Hood (for me, it was always good old Briarcliff) to lap up, most of it being complete drek. Still, that doesn’t condemn all contemporary hardcore to this purgatory, as Have Heart prove with Songs to Scream at the Sun. While not exactly the pinnacle of the genre by a long shot (since it does suffer from the same pitfalls its classmates share,) Songs to Scream… reminds a jaded youth that there exists a paradoxical style of “brocore without bros,” something we senile coots call hardcore.

As the guitars blast their opening riff to “The Same Son” and Pat Flynn cries, “When I look into the mirror I see a boy, not a man,” the listeners key into one thing: they’re hitting a wall of sound that probably won’t let up for the next twenty minutes. While it’s certainly possible for the album to melt one’s face off under the right conditions, Have Heart’s true power isn’t necessarily meant to lie within the sound alone; hence, many songs sound a little subdued. Lyrics such as the churning cries of “some families stand like November trees: barren and stark” ring out in agonized fury, punching into the hearts of listeners as jaded as me. Many moments arise where the typical group shouts come into play, unavoidably so, but to say they never fit would be a bold lie. What better way exists to deal with confusion, anger, frustration, fear, and dejection?

Such harshness and emotional sway clashes with how drab the music is in comparison. Songs bleed together in a well of monotony, from the drone of the chugging guitars to some fills and movements you could see coming from a mile down the line. Everything is very conventional and safe instrumentally, considering its heavy style. As I crested the middle of the album, right as "No Roses, No Skies" was winding down, I found myself thinking, exasperated, "okay it's hardcore, I get it." The only musical aspect not immediately predictable is the drumming, the highlight on an otherwise unsurprising soundscape. Dynamic fills that sporadically appear on songs like “Hard Bark on the Family Tree” keep coming in to save a few tracks from complete mediocrity-induced boredom (Brotherly Love,) while others go from being just “pretty good” to “great” (The Same Sun) based on that factor alone. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not implying Shawn Costa is the ultimate savior for the album and the rest of the band are teetering on ape-slaying incompetence, but he adds enough flair to be noticed, something only he seems to bring out of the six-man crew. It’s one of the unfortunate kicks to the stomach this album takes, since those bits of flair carry with them separation from the pack.

So where does Have Heart's sophomore full-length land after it's all said and done? Does it take its throne among the hardcore greats, showing those silly brocore bands what it's like in the old school? Or does it peer out from the bottom of the barrel, snarling at passersby and stealing scraps from Casey Jones? Neither, actually. It twiddles its mighty pick-wielding thumbs in purgatory along with countless other hardcore acts, forever seething with rye emotion but never making enough of a soundscape to let it out right. And that is the most glaring flaw Songs to Scream at the Sun carries: it has the power and the poetry, but not an identity.



Recent reviews by this author
Rancid Let the Dominoes FallThe Khayembii Communique The Khayembii Communiqué
Math the Band Banned the MathInterpol Turn on the Bright Lights
Less Than Jake GNV FLAStreetlight Manifesto Somewhere in the Between
user ratings (392)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
Taylor Jermolajew (2.5)
YAWN....

Lee Carlson (4)
Combine Minor Threat's straight edge lifestyle with Modern Life is War's epic song writing, and you ...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Serpento
June 20th 2010



2351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

found this sitting on my broken old hdd, touched it up a little and posted for shits and giggles. happy haven't reviewed in over a year to me

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 20th 2010



15693 Comments


hi lucio

Digging: Nmesh - Dream Sequins [AMDISCS]

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 20th 2010



15693 Comments


review is good but shit's no FACE YOUR FEARS

Satellite
June 20th 2010



19845 Comments


Worst album art ever.

Digging: The Menzingers - Rented World

FreePizzaDay
June 20th 2010



1526 Comments


I'm not sure what the point of the first paragraph is. Are you trying to call this brocore? Are you trying to say it's not brocore? It just doesn't seem to serve much purpose other than to explain what hardcore is to someone who doesn't know what hardcore is but knows what brocore is, which is kind of a ridiculous assumption to make of your readers. Anyways, maybe you could clear that up.

The rest of the review looks pretty good though. I haven't listened to this yet, but I kind of liked The Things We Carry, even if it was a bit generic.

"Worst album art ever."

I never liked it either, but it's better than Lagwagon's "Let's Talk About Feelings" (creeps me out big time) and Cold World's "Dedicated to Babies Who Came Feet First" (Also weird.)

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 20th 2010



15693 Comments


it's an anecdotal motivator technique duh

Satellite
June 20th 2010



19845 Comments


it's better than Lagwagon's "Let's Talk About Feelings" (creeps me out big time)

That is true. I used to date a girl who had a poster in her room with that album cover on it. CREEPY.

FreePizzaDay
June 20th 2010



1526 Comments


Oh. God, I'm such a review writing newb.

"That is true. I used to date a girl who had a poster in her room with that album cover on it.
CREEPY."

Yeah, she's like an adolescent Raggedy Ann doll. And those are also creepy.

Serpento
June 20th 2010



2351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

@EC: hey guy

Athom
Staff Reviewer
June 20th 2010



17117 Comments


good album. shitty fans

Digging: Sad Lovers and Giants - Feeding the Flame

cvlts
June 20th 2010



8917 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

^
that.

Digging: Pedro the Lion - It's Hard To Find A Friend

LifeInABox
June 20th 2010



3707 Comments


brocore? what the fuck is wrong with you?

LifeInABox
June 20th 2010



3707 Comments


also you just said they steal from Casey Jones. You're a fucking moron.

Serpento
June 21st 2010



2351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

in the metaphor not musically, who in their right mind would think that. but then again srs business for srs people

LifeInABox
June 21st 2010



3707 Comments


All I see is that you called them a brocore band. This is ignorant.

Serpento
June 22nd 2010



2351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

the brocore part was just an intro thing (compare how modern low-quality hardcore is more and more brocore and this doesn't follow that mold) that spiraled because i stopped caring and went with it

admittedly it makes it come off as if i don't know shit



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy