Work is slow. The only people walking through the center are zombified from the early morning commute – from the long week of work, and from those all too many drinks last night. It’s a Saturday, the only ones looking alive are the teenagers that are out early to make the most of their day before the evening gradually inches it’s way into Sunday. The weekend’s are too quick, compared to the 5-day working week. If only there were some way to spice up such a tedious morning. My only entertainment is the corner in which we sneak our phones and the bluetooth speaker, and for a Saturday morning, my phone isn’t going to be much fun considering the Friday alternative scene in Cardiff. It’s just pictures of kids eating their breakfast, or watching some creepy kids television show. I listen to the same playlist of music over and over again, so I decide a change.
My listen list, full of bands formed by friends, students and people with a passion for music is a long list to choose from. I settle for The Reckless, The Brave. I stalked their facebook not long ago, and was drawn in by the term “hard-hitting pop punk.” Pop punk is always spicy enough to turn dull to excited, or at least in my experience at least. The six track album starts with “Hard To Breathe,” and it keeps it’s promise. There’s so much energy that I instantly feel invigoration.
Forming in 2014, the band’s patience and hard-work over the two years have paid off, massively. Their EP, Out Of Time, was released mid July in 2016 and has some serious tunes. “Hard to Breathe,” is infectious, lurking at the back of your head until you listen next. The lyrics are memorable, causing involuntary singing, head movements and foot tapping. Side effects include superfluous air guitar motions. You’ll be pretending you’re in a pop punk band whether you like it or not. Through one listen, I was a guitarist, bassist and a drummer. Despite the temptation to sing into the brush handle as I sweep the work floor, I’m not that great of a singer, and I won’t try my chances in public, but I know what I’ll be singing to later.
As the album moves on to “About A Girl,” the listener gets a real sense of the modern take of pop punk. The vocals, are the main component of that vintage feeling, but it’s the instruments that are able to switch between styles. “About A Girl,” is one of the lightest songs on the album, but still filled with that punk energy. There’s something myspace-esque about the third track, “This Is Me.” The idea of stumbling upon a new bands page, and hearing their featured song start to play. It’s got a very archaic feel. Almost like before the pop to punk ratio went 7:3. A modern day, and punkier Kids In Glass Houses if you will. The album varies in the pop punk direction the band has taken – there’s heavier moments complimented by light pumps. It wins the right to be dubbed as the EP’s anthem track. Fifth track “Out Of Time,” might argue that, being the EP’s titled, it’s the rightful owner of the EP’s anthem. And it’s close. It’s a huge song and has a tantalizingly mesmerizing guitar’s working side by side. It’s all brought and held together by a break in the song where it the light truly shines on the work that the guitarist’s are doing to bring this masterpiece together.
“I’m Going Insane,” is lyrically a personal favourite – it’s flowing and catchy and overall a switch-up from their thematic style. It’s a very emotionally driven song, with optimism laced between each note and every drum beat. Every song recorded for this EP is important in it’s own way, but “I’m Going Insane,” feel like the most fluently played and confidently handled song. It’s captivating, for many reasons, including the subtle bass boosting the song’s depth. The final song, “Fade Out,” sums up the whole EP. Song after song latches itself onto your cerebrum with every note floating through your ears. In a swift conclusion, The Reckless, The Brave have achieved a modern take on early pop-punk with Out Of Time, and with plans to tour Europe over 2017, they’re going to see a lot of fist pumping.