01. Nuclear Summer - Yellow Bikes
02. Stockades - Breathing Will Be Difficult
03. Nuclear Summer & Stockades - Alien Noises
04. Nuclear Summer - $1000
05. Stockades - To Think, To Feel, and To Suffer
This is pretty interesting, and not entirely what I was expecting. Nuclear Summer starts things out, and the drums are rollicking, complemented by a noodly bassline and a pretty melodic keyboard part. This introduction gives way to a faster part with noodling guitars and screamed vocals. The musical architecture here is what truly grabbed me, as the keyboard adds a subtle vibe that is almost soulful. Every instrument here seems to be playing a different style, but somehow is all blends perfectly and it works. Man, does it work. Surprising still is that Stockades is kind of similar. Both of these bands have a pretty unique take on punk/screamo/hardcore, and fit perfectly together on this split while still exploring different sides of the same cube. Stockades flirt with a slightly more mathy and technical sound, while also integrating keyboards, and I think I hear a trumpet, unless it's a keyboard sample. Even the pacing of this release is interesting and slightly unconventional. The songs aren't divided into sides, but rather go back and forth, with an interlude of 'Alien Noises' in the center. The second Nuclear Summer song sees them singing a little bit more amidst the screams, but they maintain intensity and drive. Stockades' second song continues the styles we saw on their first offering, and continues to bend mathy emo/screamo/punk/hardcore in an interesting way. Definitely a worthwhile and engaging listen.
Reviewed by Justin.
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