On their debut album, “Until We Surrender,” Heartsounds established themselves as one of the best melodic punk bands to make their debut in the past few years. Heartsounds instantly gained a large fan following, and are continuing to gain momentum with their latest release, “Drifter.”
“Drifter” picks up exactly where “Until We Surrender” left off. There have been a few lineup changes in the past year, rounding Heartsounds out to a fully-rounded band of four members: Ben Murray (vocals and guitar), Laura Nichol (vocals and guitar), Trey Derbes (drums) and Kyle Camarillo (bass). While “Until We Surrender” saw Murray and Nichol covering all of the musical bases, on “Drifter,” they have settled in to their respective positions in the band, and are able to fully focus on one task rather than several.
“Until We Surrender” found Heartsounds’ founding members picking the musical direction that they love and suited them best. “Drifter” continues to build on this, cementing Heartsounds’ position at the forefront of the melodic punk scene. The chugging guitars, the tight rhythm section and the dual vocals are all blended so well together, that it seems almost impossible that the members of Heartsounds ever played any other genre of music. The vocals of Laura Nichol and Ben Murray compliment each other perfectly, especially on the tracks where both vocals are present.
The opening strains of the first track, “Every Second Counts,” almost makes the listener believe that they are in for a much mellower album from Heartsounds. Then it picks up, sounding like “Until We Surrender” never actually ended.
While “Until We Surrender” focused a lot on Heartsounds finding their place musically, “Drifter” finds the band struggling to find their place in life. It’s a constant struggle, but “Every Second Counts” shows a band that is determined to always come out on top, despite the issues they may face. The album focuses a lot on their relationships, with each other, with family, and love relationships. It’s a much more personal album, but still just as tight and raucous as their debut album.
Heartsounds may not step far out of their melodic punk sound, but when it sounds this good they really don’t need to. The band show some serious musical chops, and even if they played the same song over and over, their fans would still sing and mosh along as though it was the first time they had heard the song. While it may seem like nothing groundbreaking, an album of such high quality, with such great musicians, is actually something much more unique and amazing than most of the rehashed music available to the masses.
While Heartsounds may be struggling to find their place in life, they have certainly found a sound and musical style that suits them, and here’s to hoping that Heartsounds continue releasing music of such caliber.