You’ll Live are an interesting proposition, very hard to pigeon hole, different, new, whatever you want to call it, they sound like nothing else around at the minute. They take their musical cues from many genres, you can hear bits of hardcore, mid west emo, indie and even lo-fi, it’s an interesting combination but at the end of the day it works, it took me a few listens to get into it, but most of the best albums do.
Hailing from Port Lauderdale, Florida, the band has recently gone through a pretty significant change, losing their second guitarist and drummer to become a three piece. The band seem to have overcome this loss and seen it as a positive if this album is anything to go by. They have been forced to condense their sound down to a more energetic, frenetic and overall more compact one.
The album itself is 9 songs of indie hardcore wonderfulness. Clocking in just shy of thirty minutes it’s just the right length to keep your attention. Thirty minutes and a melting pot of genres to get your head around. The album has twinkly guitars, heavy moments, slower moments and is always backed with screeched vocals, not screamed, screeched (with the odd bit of actual singing as well).
There are lots of melodic melodies here as well, melodies that make you think of summer and happy thoughts, but also, for some strange reason there’s an underlying sadness that hangs around the music like a moth at a light bulb. It’s this happy sad dynamic that makes this album so intriguing.
The middle point of this album provides the best moment in my opinion “Forever here” is an excellent track, probably the strongest on the album and this is followed by a rather excellent and uplifting three minute Woody Allen sample from the film ‘Hannah and Her Sisters’ (1986). To cut it very short it’s about a man who tries to kill himself but fails, and comes to the conclusion that he should just enjoy the time that he has left. Again this leans towards the happy sad dynamic, man is upset, tries to kill himself, fails, happy! This is then followed by another excellent track, ‘I’ll never Shake This” races along at a frantic pace, it runs “Forever Here” close as my favourite, but just doesn’t make it, these three tracks are by far the strongest on the record.
The second to last song, ‘Maybe I’ll See You’ provides a moment of calm among the storm, it’s nice to have a rest now and then, but this song just doesn’t fit with the rest of the aesthetic on the album. This is soon put right with album closer ‘In Another life’, a fine way to finish an accomplished debut.
If you’re bored of the same old hardcore, screamy screamy ARGGGGGGHHH bands, then give You’ll Live a listen, they’re doing something different in this “scene” and very much remind me of personal favourites Bear vs Shark, not musically, but the way they go about mixing things up a little, they have their own distinct sound and aren’t afraid to tell people about it.
Overall this record is a great find! Don’t give up on it as it may take a few listens to sink in as it’s not an instant “FUCK ME” album, but give it time to grow and this becomes one of the best debuts of 2012.
You’ll live are certainly living, are you?
The album is available to pre-order now from Dog Knights Productions if you’re in the UK and Europe and Sometimes I Get Drunk Records if you’re in the states, its available on Seafoam Green and Frosted Clear 12” with some funky looking pop up covers for the first 100.