It took quite some time for everything to settle down, but it’s safe to say that after the departure of Jonny Craig and the arrival of Bradley Walden, Emarosa are now in a stable situation, through which they’ve rebuilt and started to regain momentum. Last year’s ‘131’, the band’s fourth full-length, was a very well received sophomore offering for Walden, and, as he and the band did with their last record ‘Versus’, they’ve a reworked a handful of its cuts to deliver a short EP, ‘131 – Reimagined’.
A somewhat subdued interpretation of ‘One Car Garage’ starts things up, which sees Walden‘s vocals focusing more on range than power. This track leads into the piano-led ‘Helpless’, which really benefits from the calmer atmosphere, allowing the emotion in the lyrics to shine through more so than in the instrumentally dominant original from the full-length.
The new take on ‘Miracle’ has a much darker, atmospheric approach that wouldn’t feel out of place in The Weeknd‘s back-catalogue, providing an impressive amount of diversity to such a short release, and such a stark change from the powerhouse that is the original number.
Closer, ‘Blue’, is another stark contrast from the original counterpart, equipped with an impressive level of vocal control to round off the EP.
Those that were a fan of ‘VS – Reimagined’ will no doubt enjoy ‘131 – Reimagined’, but the difference between the two is that on this occasion, Emarosa seem to have focused too much on their subdued approach. There are moments in an acoustic setting that you can still deliver some power, and there are definitely some opportunities over this short record that are missed.
However, Emarosa are incredibly good at what they do, and have still managed to deliver yet another fan-pleasing record to their impressive back-catalogue.
Written by Jon Barlow (@Narlow1)
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.