Old Souls



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    Old Souls Razor & Tie

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Review Text The evolution of Deaf Havana has seen them shed members and dramatically change their sound, yet their ability to produce catchy hooks and singalong choruses is as rife as ever on Old Souls. The sonic transition between their gritty 2009 debut Meet Me Halfway, At Least and Old Souls is vast and displays a considered move away from the heavier post-hardcore-influenced riffs and dual screamed/sung vocals to the straight-up pop/rock that took root in their sophomore release Fools and Worthless Liars. The addition of two new members -- adding keys and extra guitar muscle -- expanded the band into a six-piece outfit, which duly broadened the boundaries of lead man James Veck-Gilodi and allowed him to think more stadium rock than rock club. From the moment the opener "Boston Square" thuds into life, the Springsteen influences are instantly audible, yet in similar fashion to the Gaslight Anthem, they are still tied somewhat to their punkier, rough and ready past. The Boss continues to be a fixture throughout, with a lyrical nod in "22" and Veck-Gilodi's gravelly vocals bearing a constant resemblance. There are tracks that sit more on the pop side of pop/rock, though, with the soulful "Subterranean Bullshit Blues" -- featuring female gospel vocals -- and "Everybody's Dancing and I Want to Die," which is propped up by a blistering horn section, a far cry from the crunching riffs they made their name with. With further inspiration grabbed from pop-punkers Fall Out Boy and emo masters Jimmy Eat World, to flirting with Americana on "Saved," the record is as introspective and self-loathing as it is packed with youthful exuberance. This purposeful shift in direction is aimed squarely at the commercial world of radio-friendly rock anthems, which Old Souls has in abundance, yet it seemingly lacks a clear overall direction. Deaf Havana are certain to set themselves aside from peers We Are the Ocean and Lower Than Atlantis with this release, yet they still have the hallmarks of a young band in transition. ~ Scott Kerr

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. Boston Square - 4:33
  2. 2. Lights - 5:57
  3. 3. Everybody's Dancing and I Want To Die - 4:59
  4. 4. Subterranean Bullshit Blues - 3:23
  5. 5. Night Drives - 4:19
  6. 6. 22 - 4:45
  7. 7. Speeding Cars - 5:34
  8. 8. Saved - 4:16
  9. 9. Mildred - 4:48
  10. 10. Tuesday People - 4:05
  11. 11. Kings Road Ghosts - 3:18
  12. 12. Caro Padre - 6:38

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