twothirtytwo

The Hope We Had EP

Written by: TL on 17/09/2014 21:20:48

"The Hope We Had" is an EP sent into us recently by a small British quintet from the town of Aldershot, named twothirtytwo with no capital letters. They've shipped it along with a description of their appreciation for as diverse artists as Bruce Springsteen, Brand New and Hell Is For Heroes, and a heads up about how their hometown once was the spawning ground for the likes of Reuben and Hundred Reasons. Fair enough, but few of those bands serve as very accurate references for the music presented across the EP's five tracks, except for Springsteen, whose influence can be tough to unhear once you've become aware of it, as the vocals sound quite a bit like The Killers' Brandon Flowers, who's also been known to take notes out of the Boss' book.

Lacking access to roughly a million years of songwriting experience and roughly a million bandmembers in form of the E Street Band however, "The Hope We Had" is naturally far from as developed or multi-facetted as anything created by the real boss. Instead it's a bit more bright and modern in tone (again, not unlike The Killers), and while enjoyably melodic and competently put together, the band doesn't quite manage to mask the fact that they're likely only a few steps removed from the category of enthusiastic amateurism. The songs are fairly plain, melodic, pop-rock songs, primarily characterised by the moody brit-rock tone in the vocals that bring the likes of Morrissey and Robert Smith to mind as well.

You get the sense then, that this is the sound of a band that has an idea of the identity they want to form, but they have to grow confident in it still before any properly remarkable songs come out of it. There are some backing vocals in "Epitaph" and a noisy, angry part towards the end of the title track, that seem like attempts to bring the Brand New influence into the picture, but the combination is unremarkable in the way it is resolved, leaving it to the acoustic ditty "Wolves" and the high strung "The Reprieve" to serve as the ideas that sound like the better stepping stones on here. Stepping stones they are however, as "The Hope We Had" is a fairly modest release, the best thing about which is that the band has gotten past including any embarrasing weaknesses, yet at the same time show that there's plenty developing room to grow into. It's the kind of release that might get them traction locally as well as some support jobs, but a more fully realised product is needed if they really want people to start taking notice.

5

Download: The Reprieve, Wolves (Acoustic)
For The Fans Of: The Killers, The Cure
Listen: facebook.com/twothirtytwomusic

Release date 08.09.2014
Rose Coloured Records

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