The Pitch: Oslo, Norway metalcore/post-hardcore band Halcyon Days follow up their solid 2016 EP with a new full length via Indie Recordings. FFO: Architects, Underoath, Counterparts
What I Like: I'm still a sucker for somewhat sappy, emotional hardcore/metalcore, and in that respect Halcyon Days hits me right in the feels. Rain Soaked Pavements & Fresh Cut Grass, while imperfect, is more in line with the album I truly desired from Underoath this year. With a similar approach to songwriting and heartstring-pulling riffs, this is a band that understands what made early 2000's metalcore and post-hardcore the powerhouse that it was. There are certain hooks that seem to burrow directly into my soul, as with "Keeper" and "Monument," and after the first few listens it's impossible to not scream along to the very Architects-like vocal intro to "Fragments." Catchy, energetic, emotive.
Critiques: Halcyon Days' vocals come in two major flavors: high and loose screams a la Spencer Chamberlain (Underoath) and a more constricted sing-scream akin to Chester Bennington. While I'm an unapologetic fan to this day of Hybrid Theory, I am not enjoying the latter on this album. It's far from a dealbreaker, but this delivery takes away from otherwise near-flawless songs like "In Memoriam"; and some of the lyrics during these portions can also be a little cliche.
The Verdict: Rain Soaked Pavements & Fresh Cut Grass is a rock solid early effort from this Norwegian band, and likely to be one of the better metalcore releases of the year. While Halcyon Days still have a few growing pains to work through yet, I am always happy to share music that so directly reconnects me to my youth.
Flight's Fav's: Fragments, Keeper, Monument
- Review by FlightOfIcarus
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