It seems like Crooks have been pushing in on the post-hardcore market hard over the last few years, and they seem to have their name plastered everywhere you look. Yet, the band have only just come round to releasing a full-length album. ‘Are We All The Same Distance Apart’ is the first record for the band that have already played with Marmozets, Gallows and Our Last Night, and also have a particularly tasty Coheed & Cambria/Glassjaw support slot on the horizon – an impressive feat for such a young band.
The hunger is clear within the Crooks camp, but it’s the emotional passion throughout the album that puts them aside the pioneers of their genre. ‘Above Me’ kicks straight into it from the first second with a fast-paced riff that gives Silverstein a run for their money, but the chorus kicks back and lets Josh Rogers control the tempo with his calm yet raw vocal performance.
The range in a singer’s voice dictates the emotional range of a post-hardcore record by eliminating the one-dimensional element; the juxtaposition between the slow ballads and the heavier tracks creates a moving atmosphere. Rogers excels at this craft on the beautiful ‘May Be’, that uses a creeping piano song to send chills through the listener before ‘A Few Peaceful Days’ wrenches in to wipe all ideas out of the window with an excellent melodic ruckus. ‘What Might Have Been’ even manages to show impressive turns of tempo throughout with a La Dispute twist.
Title track ‘Are We All The Same Distance Apart’ takes handfuls of British rock and throws it into the American style of post-hardcore with haunting guitar tunes, but with holds the end notes in enough lines to show off that English accent with no complacency or compromise to embarrass all of the upcoming bands that try and sound as much like our friends across the water as possible.
The drums have a punk boost to the first minute of the song, and unsettle any predictable feel to the record. Crooks sound fresh and slot perfectly into what could be described as an over saturated market of Touché Amorés and Being As An Oceans – but they bring extra aspects of melodic metalcore and British influence that will attract a wider audience base.
‘Are We All The Same Distance Apart’ is saddening in parts, but the passion that coats the songs is just perfect for a record which is as positive as it is interesting, and as rocky as it is touching.
Written by Mike Heath (@MikeBeef)
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.