It’s been five years since the release of mini-album ‘Where The World Begins’, and in that time South West’s EMP!RE have made a name for themselves throughout the UK, and used their subsequent experiences to forge an impressive debut, ‘Glue’.
The album builds upon the anthemic choruses from previous releases, and layers each composition with intertwining melodies. A key example of this is highlighted in ‘Rewrite’, utilising spacious guitar lines to cut through the dense instrumentation of its soaring chorus.
With a relatively long gap between releases, the group have had the chance to evaluate the pace of the record which had resulted in an album that continually builds towards it climatic peak.
The starting point of ‘Glue’ admittedly begins assumedly, using the group’s previous efforts as a blueprint, mixing post-hardcore guitars with clean vocals to cut through the density of the pounding drums.
Subtly, the album begins to deviate from stop-start riffs and half-time choruses towards angular guitar lines off setting the spiralling codas that weave in and out, creating a completely different listening experience.
Enforcing this is highlight ‘Time Ain’t No Healer’, which is found fairly late into the album. The track itself showcases the individual strengths of each member, from the groove-tinged bass of the verse to the impressive falsetto found in the chorus.
Throughout its runtime, expectations are toyed with, whether it’s the appearance of dual vocals on the aforementioned ‘Time Ain’t No Healer’, or the violent guitar stabs cutting through the bridge melody on ‘Teeth/Teether’. The group consistently creates twists and turns whilst simultaneously pushing the energy of each track to breaking point.
Lead single ‘My Party, My Rules’ showcases the band’s adaptability at genres by crafting a bridge that mixes electronica with a smooth guitar lead to form a lush atmosphere that’s given a consistency via Joe Green‘s decision to add a crooning vocal performance.
For a highly anticipated album, EMP!RE have surpassed expectations and brought forth an exciting and impressive record in ‘Glue’ that evolves from track-to-track.