ARTIST: THE SUNDAY SADNESS

TITLE: THE SUNDAY SADNESS

LABEL: SELF-RELEASED

RATING: 7/10 

WORDS: BECTON SIMPSON

Self declared ‘dark pop’ newcomers The Sunday Sadness have brought their quirky new wave emo sound over from the shores of Bordeaux, France in the form of their self-titled debut EP, ‘The Sunday Sadness’. Describing the EP as “a collection of seven sad songs that depict the fate of someone that lost it all”, we’re clearly already in emo territory. This band aren’t the type to make happy songs – hence the name. Blending nostalgia with modernity, the five-piece offer some eighties inspired bouncy electro-pop tracks juxtaposed with the darkness of introspective emo lyrics and guitars.

There’s been much discussion about which bands are leading the new ‘emo’ genre after it’s 2000s peak but there’s a good chance these guys could be at the forefront if they keep moving in the right direction. They successfully cross over into pop while still retaining some emo credentials due to the subject matter of the songs and use of rock techniques, which invariably means they’re widening their audience and abilities to be popular with different types of crowds and scenes.

“Blending nostalgia with modernity, the five-piece offer some eighties inspired bouncy electro-pop tracks juxtaposed with the darkness of introspective emo lyrics and guitars.”

Opener ‘Lost In The Crowd’ brings in rock melodies and soaring choruses mingled with a rap break that has echoes of that nu-metal style and sounds a bit like a more laid back Linkin Park whereas second track ‘Damn I Hate It’ is more like a 1975-esque groovy dance number. With heavier bands like Bring Me The Horizon experimenting and expanding their horizons (see what we did there) recently and dipping their toes into electro, rap and pop as they did on ‘amo’, this EP has come at a good time, as well as riding that wave of the runaway success of bands such as aforementioned The 1975.

‘Cinematic’ is another word that’s been bandied around with regard to The Sunday Sadness and with just a cursory glance at their music videos, artwork and press shots, it’s easy to see why. Image and art is clearly an important part of their overall brand, but it’s also easy to hear why, in the music. ‘Someone’ sounds like it could be the theme song to a dramatic and cheesy (in the best way) 80s romance movie, complete with a smoke machine and characters giving each other suitably broody looks. It’s probably the most laid back and eerie sounding track on the collection, with atmospheric synths and extensive use of echo to help create further visuals in the listener, neatly followed up by instrumental ‘High Beams’ which keeps that exact same retro vibe.

“their fresh sound, infectious happy-yet-dark songs, intriguing image and masses of raw talent and potential will surely take them far in the industry”

After this electro-pop intersection of ‘The Hunger’ slowly leads us back out and into a more rockier finish to the EP, culminating with ‘The Wrong Way’ and ‘Sad Songs’, the former featuring some frantic twenty one pilots’ style rapping which switches into a soaring emo chorus and ends up being one of the best tracks on the album. It sounds completely different to the second, third and fourth tracks which gives the impression of a band still finding their feet with this EP and figuring out where to go next. That’s understandable, given its their debut, but one of the interesting things about this band is that they could really take their sound in any given direction.

They could develop that emo rock sort of vibe most obviously seen on ‘The Wrong Way’ and ‘Lost In The Crowd’. Or they could go down the pop route championed on ‘Damn I Hate It’ and ‘Someone’. Either would work on their own and in terms of songwriting, the talent is undeniable. The Sunday Sadness seem to be masters at both styles which means blending both could work, but there’s still room for them to find a way to fuse these styles more coherently. It’ll be exciting to see where they go next but their fresh sound, infectious happy-yet-dark songs, intriguing image and masses of raw talent and potential will surely take them far in the industry.

 

 

 

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