Kill It With Fire!

We're Not Coming Back Your Way EP

Written by: TL on 16/11/2011 23:35:23

Right people, time to squeeze out a bit of writing again, and this here is one review in which I'm going pretty much straight to the point, simply because tonight's band doesn't really have much history to base an introduction on. They're called Kill It With Fire! and they're five dudes from Wales who joined forces little over a year ago and released their debut EP "We're Not Coming Back Your Way" in the summer of this year. With it, they join the ranks of the growing number of British bands that buy into sounds from American pop-punk (like Me Vs Hero, You Me At Six, Kyoto Drive, Out Of Sight etc. etc.) and - to just go ahead and ruin any sort of suspense - they've actually gotten a pretty fine debut out of doing so.

Among their influences, they themselves list bands like Four Year Strong, The Wonder Years and Me Vs Hero, and those are also easy to trace when listening to the music, which is sunny, pop-punk of the traditional sort, rich with lightened elements which once upon a time belonged in hardcore and moments that remind you of genre progenitors New Found Glory. You get simplistic, melodic riffage which is catchy enough to easily enjoy, yet never so glossy as to over-emphasize the pop in pop-punk like bands like All Time Low tend to do, and furthermore, the distinct British accent with which the vocals are sung makes the band sound different from at least their many American genre-colleagues.

The British take on American pop-punk is nothing new you might say, as the band's I've already mentioned - You Me At Six, Me Vs Hero, Out Of Sight and most recently Save Your Breath - have been doing this for a while now, and you would be at least somewhat right. What Kill It With Fire! are doing isn't really all that different, except where many of those other bands have put me off a bit by sounding overly calculated and try-hard, KIWF's songs ring true in my ears, likely due to their faithful dedication to the dynamics that have traditionally made songs in this genre good. Up-beat parts are interrupted by pop-punk breakdowns at exactly the right moments, and choruses kick in sounding good, simple and catchy. It also seems the lads have paid especially close attention to You Me At Six's "Take Off Your Colours" album, as they employ the similar approach of smacking an extra catchy climax on the end of already catchy songs. Just see "Ales, Fails And Whale Tails" or "Afterparty" for examples, the latter of which makes an extra sticky listen, with its cheeky employment of keyboards.

Now, all of this helps Kill It With Fire meet many of the requirements I have before I'll cash out a grade that reflects me being impressed with a debut EP. Still though, when they don't quite hit the jackpot, it is for three distinct reasons: The first, and lamest, is simply presedence - and what I mean by this is that so many bands make debuts like that, only to fail completely when they need to come up with enough ideas for a follow-up or a full LP. It makes one cautious about getting excited in what so far looks like it could be a similar case. The second, somewhat more sensible reason, is that KIWF's lack of originality do eventually catch up with them, as it should be clear to anybody that they need to develop a more unique identity to make it far as a band - Which brings me to the third and final point, which is that the band's singer, although certainly delivering a decent performance, needs to up his ante, because it will likely be his ability to develop a recognizable singing voice that sets the limit for how far these guys eventually go. For now though, enjoy a spirited, well-written four-track made purely out of youthful enthusiasm and love for classic pop-punk virtues.

Download: Ales, Fails And Whale Tails; Afterparty
For The Fans Of: Kyoto Drive, You Me At Six (on "Take Off Your Colours"), With The Punches, Me Vs Hero

Release Date 07.09.2011
Hang Tight Records

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