Touche Amore / La Dispute - Searching For A Pulse/The Worth of the World
Record Label: No Sleep Records
Release Date: July 27, 2010 (Vinyl/Digital)
In 2008, I missed the boat on Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair. Almost a year later, I missed the boat on ...To the Beat of a Dead Horse. There are two reasons for this. The first is that I am not as keen on new and exciting music as much as Blake will always be. The second is that around the end of the decade, I had pretty much given up on the whole screamo thing. I clung to my Kill Sadie 7-inches and branched out to what was going on in the Pitchfork world and with my college radio colleagues'.
My collection towards the end of college didn't reflect my collection towards the beginning. Why should it have? Every week I was introduced to new choreographs and sweet chugs filled with clean keys. I had given up hope. Thankfully, some of us have had enough. Two bands that are leading the way in trying to produce something a bit natural have teamed for a split to tied us over until we can get another full length from them in the near future.
Touche Amore's two contributions are short and to the point. "I'll Get My Just Deserve" is old fashion hardcore driven by vocalist Jeremy Bolm's and La Dispute's Jordan Dreyer's quick lyricism. It is a solid contemporary, though it sounds like the dirty past in concept and recording. Building suspense with "I'll Deserve Just That" produces an emotional downfall that's gripping in post-hardcore nostalgia of the late '90s D.I.Y. and Revelation Records scene. It's that feeling the first person who cracked the first Coca-Cola Classic felt.
Turn wax over.
La Dispute's tracks sound epic. "How I Feel" vocally and instrumentally launches off as Dreyer tries to cram as many of his emotions into the heat-sinking track. Bolm's guest vocals sound just as vicious as Adam Vass' bass acts as the backdrop. "Why It Scares Me" is the band's crowning achievement, and possibly one of their best to date. The song is a heart on the floor psychiatrist session having Dreyer belt out, "have I been taking my emotional queues from the scripts I wrote at sixteen?"
Both bands solidify their fight against the bland with the release of Searching For a Pulse/The Worth of the World. Drawback: it's a split and far too short to fulfill the void needed right now. But with labels like No Sleep, Top Shelf and Sargent House producing some of the finest throwbacks to our youth, we can only hope that these two bands and their honest display of late '90s-early millennial hardcore is the fix to the flood in the system for the time being.