Discovered using the Self-Promotion Forum, this week's choice for the Spotlight is Haulover Drive. Want a shot at getting your band featured here? Sign up for an AP.net account and make a post in the self-promotion forum. Head over to the replies to read more about this week's pick.
I've lived in South Florida all my life, and within the last five years I have discovered how big the local pop punk scene here is. Producing heavyweights New Found Glory over a decade ago, SoFla has never suffered from a lack of groups that want to play hard, fast, and catchy tunes. Most recently I've discovered Haulover Drive, a five-piece out of Miami that have been playing local and regional shows for almost two years.
The band lean on the strength of guitarists Zack Smith and David Abad's tendency to write sky-high hooks, as seen on "This Time Around" and "Leaving Today". Drummer Raymond Leon provides an explosive presence behind the kit, and Sean Acosta is a force to be reckoned with at bass. The problem with most local bands around South Florida isn't a lack of instrumental talent, but rather severe issues when it comes to the singer. This band nip that problem in the bud, however, as lead singer Alex Corralles' high-pitched, nasally vocals complete the band's sound and make Haulover Drive a premiere unsigned pop punk group from this neck of the woods. "Bottom of the Ninth" shows the ability of this group to write undeniably catchy hooks and Corralles' capacity to deliver one-liners that will stay in your head for days. The band have an impressive range for such a young group, which is demonstrated best on "Setting Sails". Starting out slow but continuing into an uptempo chorus, the song is highlighted by a breakdown where Corralles belts out "Let this go / Let this go / Commit this to memory". It's an intense outro to the song and shows tons of potential in the group.
Haulover Drive recently finished recording Clothing Optional, their five-song debut EP, in Orlando with Brooks Paschal of The Afterlife Kids. Paschal's recent work includes There for Tomorrow and VersaEmerge, so it's no surprise that Clothing Optional sounds huge and glossy without being overproduced. Haulover Drive have yet to release any songs from the EP (the songs on the Myspace player and in the video are all earlier versions that were recorded a while ago), but today we're bringing an AbsolutExclusive with a track from Clothing Optional. "This Time Around" is the opener to the EP and displays the style that Haulover Drive have built a loyal local following with. Head to their AP.net Profile now to stream the track, and be sure to keep an eye out for a revamped Myspace from the guys, as well as a full EP stream on Purevolume and the EP release within the next month.