Review Summary: Really... who could have expected any less?
It’s really fuc
king tempting to comment on the split at hand while making some sort of remark about screamo in generalities. On one hand, we have The Saddest Landscape who recently returned from a hiatus with a scorching resurgence, awesomeness intact. Pianos Become the Teeth’s Old Pride
marked the past year’s intriguing influx of emotional hardcore music with frenzied screams and a certain reverence for the 90’s. It’s all too fitting that they decided to team up with The Saddest Landscape, as the bands, together, sort of personify the interesting progression screamo has taken over the years. For fear of straying into nonsensical, typecasting, territory, I’ll try taking Split
for face-value instead of looking too deeply into possibly
-apparent aspects. Incidentally, it’s just as impressive this way. Even if Split
isn’t some defining crater in screamo history, the two songs are spellbinding examples of passion gone right.
In Pianos Become The Teeth’s case, they bump up the energy a notch, and the effect is so gratifying for me, personally, it’s not even funny. Every time I listen to Old Pride
I’m left with a distinct impression of how impressive the soundscapes they create with ambience, with poignant build-ups, but how they tend to fall a tad flat and never quite peak into anything exceptional. They had all this potential that the track on Spit
fully realizes, beautifully. That same songwriting skill from Old Pride
is readily apparent, as “New Normal” begins from a chaotic, vocal-centric piece with absolutely impeccable
drumming. By rule, I hesitate to compare any drummer to the sheer ferocity of Gospel’s Vinny Rosenbloom... but Christ is the percussion on “New Normal” equally captivating and galvanizing. The screams on Old Pride
protruded from the atmosphere that PBTT crafted, and the drawn-out style that the singer employs here works well, once again. The only apparent switching-of-the-formula is the catharsis being so evident early on, minus any filler, a direction I’m elated to see the band have taken. Eventually, the track morphs into more melody-laden territory, an apt complement to The Saddest Landscape’s side. Simply put,”New Normal” is the screamo outfit’s best song to date, a 3-minute sign of stupendous quality ahead from the Baltimore young ‘uns.
“Death Becomes Us” calls upon different influences, but The Saddest Landscape assemble an engrossing song as any in their recent discography. The distinctive qualities in the talking/screaming combo are still present, and the song’s varied, frenetic guitar work keeps it lively and upbeat. It may not be as exciting as “New Normal,” but this speaks more to my high expectations of the more veteran screamo troupe.
is bright, sunny skies on the horizon. Not to say that the genre has experienced some stagnancy over the years; it’s just thrilling that The Saddest Landscape are collaborating with newcomers Pianos Become the Teeth, and even more exciting that the product is so goddamned fantastic. It might be a little hasty getting that
hung up on the quality of two songs, and it’s tough to fairly label the Split anything more than “great” due to the lack of quantity, but it really can’t be said enough how outstanding the quality is that lies underneath this green pond. Ladies and gentlemen, the immediate future of emotional hardcore is in good hands, I assure you.