ARTIST: A CRASH REPUBLIC
TITLE: HOMEWRECKERS: SWEET APATHY
WORDS: KEVIN FLINN
Many bands create a narrative within their music. Telling stories that can be contained to a song, an album, or even over the course of their entire discography. And in the case of Boston punk band, A Crash Republic, they’re striving to create a narrative that spans three EP’s under the name ‘Homewreckers’, starting with the recently debuted first of the three, “Homewreckers: Sweet Apathy”. With their blend of alternative rock, punk, and even a tinge of metal, A Crash Republic creates a solid and well balanced entry into this trilogy.
There’s a familiarity with ACR that only a punk band from Boston can bring. There are definitely hints of stylings from other bands in the area, think Dropkick Murphys but with a lack of that celtic-punk flair. The energy is there, as well as a similar vocal style, but the sound is more akin to heavier pop-punk groups. What will definitely perk those ear holes though is the guitar work. With a sound that should belong in a post-hardcore or metal band, the guitar is one of the more intriguing aspects to the band as a whole. Often kept in the background as an accent, when the guitar lead gets a chance to break free expect fast paced fills and riffs that bring a whole new element to this group.
“With their blend of alternative rock, punk, and even a tinge of metal, A Crash Republic creates a solid and well balanced entry into this trilogy.”
Sweet Apathy was led by the single, ‘Last September’, which also acts as the first track of six in the EP. Beginning with a lo-fi mix of vocals and guitar, the song soon throws the listener into the fray of this band’s sound. The heavy guitars during the first verse and chorus act as a solid counterweight to the vocal timbre. The second verse introduces the metal-like guitar riffs that ACR uses so well. The drums are unrelenting, with crash cymbals continuously going off in the background, with an occasional mix of hi-hat accents and tom hits to highlight the intensity of the song. The bass acts a solid foundation overall, following along with the rhythm guitar and adding much needed depth. At just under 2 and half minutes, ‘Last September’ is a short, albeit wonderful introduction to this EP and the overall narrative.
‘Post Summer Rain’ provides a bit of a break from the heavy hitting the other tracks have, at least in just the beginning moments. Starting with a piano riff and vocals, the song builds into ACR’s Bostonian rock style until the heart pounding drums lead into the main section. The vocal melody has a Christmasy like style to it in the verse, highlighting the lyrical content. The drums are in full hardcore mode here, working in tandem with the guitar/bass pattern. The overall track is a prime example of a band keeping to their sound, but not afraid to add a bit more to their established sound to make the overall track that much better.
“Every song is different enough to dig into individually and analyze on a deeper level, but overall stays true to the band’s sound.”
What’s more exciting about the overall EP is that A Crash Republic engineered, mixed, and produced the entirety of Sweet Apathy, while outsourcing the mastering phase. Today’s music is almost a far cry from where it was even just two decades ago. With the growth of personal computers and ease of access to DAW’s (digital audio workstations), it has never been easier to harness what used to be a selective trade and create music anywhere. Sweet Apathy acts as a wonderful example of this new standard in music, a self-producing band releasing great music on their own.
A Crash Republic has created a hard pounding, melodic first entry to the planned Homewreckers trilogy. Every song is different enough to dig into individually and analyze on a deeper level, but overall stays true to the band’s sound. There’s a lot that goes on with each track. Between the intriguing instrumentation, the lyrical content to the overall narrative, and even the individual songs with the varying styles that can be found within each passing second. ACR is on to something great, and it’ll be exciting to see where the band goes with the next EP in this trilogy.