Review Summary: Park Jefferson's third self-released EP is a bit "better" than just three poorly produced modern emo songs.
Spending a lot of time in any one genre of music can be good or bad. Sure, it’s great to hear so many similar artists who clearly draw from the same influences that spawned the genre in the first place (like the mass of pop punk bands that seem to all worship Jawbreaker, for example). However, hearing band after band with literally no sonic distinction between one another can become tiresome. Thus is the current state of emo; there is a multitude of twinkly emo bands with Kinsella-esque vocals and mathy (for lack of a better word) instrumentation in the vein of American Football. Luckily, this sound simply works for some bands, Park Jefferson included, who managed to craft a very enjoyable three song EP bursting with emotion and catchiness.
The Better Boy
EP is roughly ten minutes long, not including the bonus acoustic version of the title track, and while not groundbreaking, it presents enough new ideas to keep the listener coming back. The frantic vocals, slipping in and out of key at times, are complemented by the honest lyrical content and interesting yet not overly-complex instrumentation. The title track, and clear standout on the EP, features lyrics such as “Do you remember this like I remember you?
,” which are delivered sincerely over a buildup that eventually bursts into an emotionally heavy transitional section.
Unfortunately, the EP suffers from subpar production, causing the vocals to become lost beneath a wall of sound at times, and the guitar tone could be improved as well. Given that the EP was self-released, the production quality is not a huge deterrent, but simply an area that the band will hopefully improve on future releases. With Better Boy
, Park Jefferson have demonstrated that they can be a good
emo band. The real question is whether or not they will progress as a band, put out one or two great
records, and then follow suit and break up like their predecessors.