Half Hearted Hero

Running Water EP

Written by: PP on 07/06/2011 04:02:01

Anyone who thinks all punk can be summed up with just a few chords should be referred in the direction of Half Hearted Hero. Their hyper speed tempo is only eclipsed by their astonishing technical ability, defined by their ability to display advanced fretwork in the form of seemingly impossible riffs while still amassing enough melody to feed an army of pop punk fans. Their previous release "Defining Refining" showed the direction for these guys, but was a little anonymous to have larger impact, something that "Running Water" EP is hoping to correct.

The monotonous all-out technical onslaught of that album has been refined to include more variety on all fronts. The drumming is no longer an entire release's worth of crashing cymbals in a relentless d-beat, but now commands the tempo within songs in a more textured manner. The guitarists, too, have learned to tone down the at times ridiculous technicality to a level where they aren't just showing off their ability rather than contributing real sections to songs, the excellent piece "Periphery" being the prime example. Then there's the vocalist, who continues in his mostly clean style, but has added a distinct element of roughness that gives his voice character and sticks it to your memory more easily. The occasional gravelly texture in it should remind you of a certain Jimmy Stadt of Polar Bear Club fame, throwing the band more into a melodic hardcore direction than the pop punk most people classify them as.

That said, Half Hearted Hero is still Half Hearted Hero. They can still be compared to This Is A Standoff, Belvedere, After The Fall and such bands, with a new addition being Caleb Lionheart who, knowingly or not, took influence from the HHH debut on their brilliant "Climbing Up A Mountain, Just For The View" EP. "Running Water" thus sees them play highly technical punk/pop punk/melodic hardcore with very busy and lively soundscapes that should appeal to those who usually find punk bands too simple.

Download: Periphery, Start Where You Are
For the fans of: This Is A Standoff, Belvedere, Caleb Lionheart, After The Fall
Listen: Bandcamp

Release date 05.04.2011
Animal Style Records

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