Another October - Storage Stories
Another October are a Grand Rapids, Michigan based 5-piece upstart who have recently claimed a coveted spot on the Vans Warped Tour. They are using that impressive limelight to debut their first EP, Storage Stories. The boys play a bright, very popular blend of pop rock that draws from the likes of My Chemical Romance, The Used, and a myriad of other sources. Ultimately, Storage Stories is a highly focused, miminally varied and solid dose of modern pop rock.
The spoken word intro, either an actual or recreated senior graduation speech (I'd lean towards the latter), sets both a mood and is extremely telling of the subject matter Another October focus on over the course of the EP. "Dear Friends and Enemies (This One's For You)" seems to take a rear-view approach to the social ups and downs of the typical teenager, and by the end of the record stands out as it's best offering by far. A distinct piano melody adds a spark to the upbeat, melodic pop. The dual vocals are rather potent, with lead singer Chen Flakes sounding very fitting for the blend of music being presented and the backup vocals adding punch and variety. "Romeo Was Wrong" shows more of the band's beyond-their-years capability to craft immediately memorable pop, with catchy riffs and vocal melodies driving headlong into a sizable chorus. "Autumn Again" feels vaguely similar to the last track, a bit of a pitfall of youth and enthusiastic songwriting (as opposed to variation via experience) but by no means a bad track by itself, with a simple piano line pulsing behind another easily digested dose of catchiness. "California" shows a softer, more exposed side of the band, an acoustic jaunt through a sorrow-laced tale of hope and heartache that is most likely universally relatable. It sticks out like a sore thumb in the best of ways. "Last Night With Audrey Hepburn" is nothing short of radio-ready, and should be a flagship track for the band as they spread their sound far and wide.
To put it blunt, many will be put off by Another October's somewhat melodramatic approach to their subject matter, and also by their shameless pop-heavy sound. But in an age where electronic music is dominating pop far and wide, it's never a bad thing to hear a group of musicians craft it in the style of the original purveyors of pop. Storage Stories is a short and impressive bit of catchy rock and roll that will most likely appeal to the younger, 13-18 age bracket, but has a universal appeal in it's bombast and energy that may catch even those weary naysayers offguard.
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