TROUBLED COAST- Awake and Empty
Despite having been around for five years and a handful of releases now, Troubled Coast have never quite got their shit together. They’ve been on the right lines, sure, but no single element of their poetic hardcore was elite. They seemed destined to be one of those perennial support bands, another group left on the edge of things. ‘Awake and Empty’ swiftly pulls them out of the suck. The step up is immediate- opener ‘Brother’ is a dark, dangerous and beautiful beast, and exactly the sort of brilliant, serpentine attack so sorely missing before. Seriously, this one song could see Troubled Coast mentioned in the same breath as Touché Amore and La Dispute and act as a springboard for future success. The rest of the album is pretty special too. ‘Confidence’ is the sort of spring-loaded balls-out bruiser The Used wish they still wrote, and if, musically at least, ‘Northwest ‘ could be Paramore (shit is soooo catchy), ‘1967’ is the sort of songs your parents warned you about- a hulking angry figure in the shadows. If this all sounds terribly now, well, it is, but there’s staying power here too. ‘Awake…’ is packed with muscle and melody bigger than movements and trends and marks the first time Troubled Coast absolutely must be listened to.