Birmingham’s Layover first hit the scene in 2016 to a rather fruitless endeavour which ended in a hiatus at the end of the year. Two years and a wealth of gained experience later, the band have come back harder and heavier than ever with their EP, ‘Your Laughter Never Leaves’.
While it feels like it lacks a certain something, it’s an incredibly promising debut for the band with five track that are dripping with pop-punk and emo tendencies.
Opener ‘Hunger Pains’ is about as poppy as the EP gets. Musically it’s upbeat and catchy whilst lyrically it’s sombre and deeply reflective of lead singer Luke Rainsford‘s struggle with mental health, and in particular his mother’s battle with terminal cancer. The guitar hooks are catchy, and the drums are rhythmically solid.
While ‘Hunger Pains’ showcases ability and promise, the next two quick-fire tracks ‘Coffee And Fluoxetine’ and ‘Hollow Me Out’ fall flat. Both are too short and, while the latter experiments slightly with rhythm and time signatures, there’s not enough substance in that short amount of time to amount to anything of significant value. Yes, it’s catchy, but that’s about it.
‘Slumber’ is the clear stand out, with its multi-instrument layering building up to a nerve tingling climax. It’s the strongest all-round track on the EP, and it feels as if the band tried just a little harder on this compared to the rest. It drips in passion, and it’s a certain fan favourite.
Ending with its titular track, the song shows a progression into darker territory that has its roots firmly placed in the emo camp. As is a constant through the EP, Rainsford‘s vocal delivery is sharp, and his lyrics are both powerful and cathartic. It’s a rather tame ending to a rather tame record.
While there’s still a lot to be desired, ‘Your Laughter Never Leaves’ is a platform from which Layover can grow and develop into one of emo’s heavy hitters. Rainsford showers lyrical maturity through the EP that’s well beyond his years, and it will only serve the band well in the long run. If they get the formula right, it could be something quite special.
News Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Part-time drinker. | Pop-punk and Manchester United | Been trying to make fetch happen since 2004.