Take The Long Road Home is the new mini album from British quintet Seven Stories High, an encounter which finds the band’s already ear pleasing pop punk with even bolder infectiousness and melodic enterprise to tempt national awareness. Take The Long Road Home hits the ground running and continues to offer variety and creative tenacity throughout. Admittedly it might often avoid the uniqueness which certain moments within it suggests is there within the band’s imagination, but from start to finish the Swansea hailing band successfully ensure enjoyment is at the top of the agenda.
Formed at the beginning of 2014 with inspirations said to include the likes of Blink 182 and Sum 41, Seven Stories High soon made their mark on their local and increasingly the national live scene. Line-up changes and inner positional shuffles have been part of the band’s earlier times, as too and since, the sharing of stages with bands such as Moose Blood, Decade, Altered Sky, Light You Up, and Kids Can’t Fly. They released their self-titled debut EP on the January of 2015 to potent responses which now Take The Long Road Home threatens to turn into a stronger national recognition of their emerging presence.
The release opens proper with CTRL, a rousing slice of raucous pop punk with thumping beats and wiry riffs around the potent tones of vocalist Rhys Hyett-Ferrier. There is a great rawness to the song too, bringing a touch of Millencolin to it at times but equally a rousing energy which especially equips the group roars and the irresistibly catchy enterprise shared by the guitars of Matt Davies and Charlie Porter.
The potent start continues with the similarly tenacious and lively That’s No Moon, another which takes no time in firing up ears and appetite with its raucous pop punk dexterity. Framed and driven by the throbbing bassline of Kallum Brain and the swinging beats of Dave Bevan, the song soon reveals a sonic and emotive fire in its belly. Admittedly, as its predecessor, there is something very familiar to the encounter but more than made up for by the adventurous hooks and a vocal strength which simply captures the imagination from Hyett-Ferrier with resourceful backing from Davies and Brain.
It is that aspect of the band which most consistently impresses across the release, with no negative reflection on the potent songwriting and skilfully woven sounds, the vocals making a constantly striking impression repeated on the feisty canter of Working For Wednesdays and following it, the excellent Wait For It. The first of the two also bears some great scything spicy grooves to keep ears and appetite busy, if without quite living up to the first pair while its successor, which features Charlotte Gilpin from Dream State, explores a more alternative rock canvas for its melodic seducing of ears. It still has a punk essence in its spirited flame, though it could be called more post hardcore scented; one of many textures in the emotively fuelled drama of sound led by the powerful vocal union of Hyett-Ferrier and Gilpin.
It is a track which becomes increasingly potent with every listen as too the acoustic stroll of Skin Me Alive. It is an immediately alluring proposal which further blossoms in ears the more time given to it. Its melodic serenade simply leaves a lingering impression before making way for album closer Fool’s Paradise, a boisterous tapestry of melodic suggestiveness around rapacious rhythms and expressively strong vocals. There is little surprising about the highly accomplished song, but it leaves enjoyment full so, as the release, warrants only recommending.
Seven Stories High have taken another potent step with Take The Long Road Home, and indeed their sound and its growing maturity. The band might not yet be in touch will major uniqueness but the signs and potential is there in some cracking tunes. A fan of bands such as Kids in Glass Houses, A Day to Remember, and All Time Low then Seven Stories High will be up your street.
Take The Long Road Home is released May 20th through all stores and at https://sevenstorieshigh.bandcamp.com/album/take-the-long-road-home
Pete RingMaster 19/05/2016
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