Growing Up Is Killing Me

Written by: PP on 26/01/2014 16:15:52

My first experience with Veara: bouncy, upbeat, bright pop-hardcore band with strong pop punk tendencies supporting Sum 41 in an almost empty Amager Bio, but armed with infectious energy that was difficult to resist. Next up I checked out their debut album "What We Left Behind" and concluded it was a decent mixture of New Found Glory and Four Year Strong back then. The Augusta, Georgia based pop punk band have now reached their sophomore album with "Growing Up Is Killing Me", and they've changed a number of elements in their expression.

On surface, the band follow largely same guidelines as in the past: bright pop punk is the red thread throughout the record. At the same time, all easycore elements that were present on the debut have been switched out with standard fare pop punk melodies, and they've also added much more polish in their production overall. The result is a soundscape that nowadays has more in common with mid 2000s pop punk bands like Hit The Lights than A Day To Remember, which their debut album occasionally referenced with its crunchy sections. Those are nowhere to be found here. To replace them, they have brought in numerous guest appearances; Soupy from The Wonder Years helps out on "Growing Up Is Killing Me", Shane Told of Silverstein appears on "Don't Call Me Lucky", and Andrew DeNeef from Close To Home shares vocal duties on "Fake Blood". These are mostly unnoticeable, though, and an opportunity is missed where these songs could've been standout tracks given the unique styles perpetrated by all of those vocalists. Yes, Shane does scream on the track, but he's in such a minor role it feels almost irrelevant that he's actually there.

Even though many of the tracks are relatively high tempo offerings, it feels like they are drained from energy due to way too much polish in the production, which removes all and any identity from Veara's sound. This is how all mid 2000s pop punk bands sounded like; you simply need to do more to stick out from the crowd. My new experience with Veara: few catchy songs, but overall this is too generic to strike out. When you replace crunch with polish you'll make yourself friendlier to the radio, but at the cost of character.


Download: Next Stop...Everywhere, The Worst Part of You, Separate Ways
For the fans of: New Found Glory, Four Year Strong, Hit The Lights
Listen: Facebook

Release date 24.09.2013

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