Title Fight - Floral Green
Noisy Pennsylvania hardcore kids Title Fight released their debut album Shed last year to critical acclaim and sophomore effort Floral Green fundamentally picks up where that left off but through adding subtle nuances to the band's cacophonous melody it also essentially and steadily redefines their sound.
The straight-out-the-traps heavily emo-tinged tunes that filled much of their debut remain in part with recent single Secret Society and opener Numb, But I Still Feel It hitting with the classic scratched melodies and bruising guitars, frontman Ned Russin's bark moving between raging shouts and anthemic sing-a-long moments, the "I made promises that I can't keep" opening to the former being particularly striking, only his own bass accompanying the vocal before the guitars crash in behind. Elsewhere though the band branch out with a lot more measured space, lead single Head In The Ceiling Fan glimmers with a drowsy and enveloping late afternoon sunshine, Russin slowing his vocals right down to a drawn out melody recalling Jawbox's J Robbins or Jawbreaker's Blake Schwarzenbach, the echoing Lefty picking up this idea later on in the album and doing new and expansive things with it again. It gives the record a thick absorbing sound and allows the quartet to begin to take different forms around their melodic hardcore base, closer In-Between even possessing tinges of Nirvana in its swirling delivery, it feels as if they're constantly progressing ideas as the album itself progresses.
Title Fight have made an album here that's a constantly changing shade of colour and mixture of moods, if Shed was a punch in the face this is the band establishing themselves and expanding, it feels natural and it is natural. Guitarist and co-vocalist Jamie Rhoden's Rival Schools-esque screams of "keep this a secret!" on Frown blend seamlessly next to the slower and grungier tones of Calloused straight after it, it's a melting pot of ideas that work damn well alongside each other.
With an average age of around twenty-three, the fact that the band are experimenting with their sound and producing results of such a high quality this early on speaks volumes, a truly involving record from a band who are only going to continue to get better.