Sunday, September 23, 2012

Artist Spotlight: Placeholder

There are countless ways an album or EP can make an impact. Vocals, lyrics and musicianship all play a part in how you react the first time you hear something; it just all depends on the band as to which aspect has the biggest effect. Listening to Placeholder's new 7", Thought I Would Have Been Somebody By Now, I was struck by all of these traits, but it's the influences I hear in their music that really hit me. For the past few years, we've heard bands putting out material that draws inspiration from groups like The Impossibles, Saves the Day, Gatsby's American Dream, etc., but I can't think of anyone that seems to have molded their sound in the same vein as 90's grunge/rock band, Far. They're arguably one of the best groups from that era of music, which I'm sure anyone who is a fan would agree on. Now, Placeholder has captured the essence of what made their genre so great, and molded into a sound that is completely their own.

Placeholder straddles a line between punk hardcore and grunge, with slight leanings in a pop/punk direction. "Mary" immediately pulls you into their aggressive and melancholic style, which should catch the attention of fans of Make Do and Mend, Seahaven (when they released Ghost) and the like. The guitars have a noticeably rough sound, with chord progressions that keep everything moving forward, and slightly strained vocals that switch between being clean and screaming. It’s clear to me that Placeholder has put everything they have into this EP. The passion they have for what they're doing really shows in these songs, and it'll never stop being comforting to hear a band put forth such an honest effort. They're especially talented in incorporating subtly upbeat melodies and vocals without making it sound forced. Both "Tired of Me" and "Calculation" do this with ease. The hooks are there along with vocal melodies that just call out for you to sing along with.

If ever there was band to keep your eye on, it's definitely Placeholder. It's a fairly late release, but it's one that I know I'm going to look back on fondly at the end of the year. And if they keep moving in the direction they're headed, who know what a future full length will entail.



No comments:

Post a Comment