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My Heart to Joy - Reasons to Be EP Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 8
Musicianship 8
Lyrics 7.5
Production 8
Creativity 8.5
Lasting Value 7
Reviewer Tilt 8.5
Final Verdict: 79%
Member Ratings
Vocals 8.75
Musicianship 9.25
Lyrics 8.75
Production 7.5
Creativity 8.5
Lasting Value 8
Reviewer Tilt 8.5
Average: 85%
Inside AP.net

My Heart to Joy - Reasons to Be EP

Reviewed by: Adam Pfleider (01/10/11)
My Heart to Joy Reasons to Be EP
Record Label: Topshelf Records
Release Date: December 21, 2010


I'll try not to bring this up again after this review (especially since I've brought it up in almost everything else I have haphazardly penned on this site), but last year was quite phenomenal if you were into the scene and tired of faux-scream. Through the community of bands not only here in Texas, but also the touring ones coming through, I was able to breathe again standing in front of pizza shop windows and record store small shows.

More evident than just the growth of the what I'm deeming the "#tourlife community" seen back in the '80s and '90s D.I.Y. scene (see also: American Hardcore and Burning Fight), but it's the instant gratification of grasping something raw as it wraps like a new winter coat. One of those sleeper hits in the last two years was from My Heart to Joy with Seasons in Verse. Slightly less in production (but that's a standout about it) than say an album like Tell All Your Friends or In the Shadow of Two Gunmen, it certainly carried a familiar swagger. But sadly, it seemed to blow under the radar for many.

The band has finally released their three song follow-up. My Heart to Joy have come back and amped up production with Reasons to Be, which makes them sound less like a throwback and a bit more contemporary. The bright tinge of the opening guitar lick on "Farewell to a Raincloud" match up to a more harmonic change in vocals, losing a sense of raspiness on early 7" releases and last year's LP especially. After repeat listens, I'm in between whether this is a natural progression of production or a step back on the early ripe sound that made me fall for the band in the first place.

The girl next door hasn't changed her personality though, as the simplistic tongue still runs through the three tracks as similar rhythmic chops carry along "Taken With a Presence," another great song from the guys. But as "Steady Habits" acts like a quick bridge between the opening and closing of the short EP, things tend to run together, and the three songs act better in your latest playlist mix than as a quick record. My Heart to Joy are still showing they've got what it takes as a band among the #tourlife scene that is sure to blow up in the next few years. Reasons to Be is slick and will add a few new tracks for that afternoon ride around on the weekend. For the band's own good, I hope they continue to stick to their talents and keep a little grit under their pits without cleaning up into something forgettable.

Track Listing1. Farewell to a Raincloud
2. Steady Habits
3. Taken With a Presence


Recommended If You LikeMan Overboard's Real Talk; Hostage Calm's Hostage Calm; Midtown's Living Well is the Best Revenge
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 22
07:25 PM on 01/10/11
#2
KingsCrossing
What are you waiting for?
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Didn't even know this was coming out. Love the last album.
08:04 PM on 01/10/11
#3
Jeremy Aaron
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Seasons in Verse was the shit. I still remember hearing "Giving My Hands Away" and thinking, my god. This definitely slicker sounding, and I'm not sure it's the best move for them specifically. Still pretty solid though.
08:17 PM on 01/10/11
#4
Adam Pfleider
wait. what were we talking about?
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Seasons in Verse was the shit. I still remember hearing "Giving My Hands Away" and thinking, my god. This definitely slicker sounding, and I'm not sure it's the best move for them specifically. Still pretty solid though.
exactly. I don't why they went with it, but it didn't take away from the actual music, which is good, but I do miss that grit a bit and hope it doesn't progress into something forgettable. this band is so poised to standout.
08:46 PM on 01/10/11
#5
Modern Leper
what?
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Yeah, this is good but Seasons in Verse is fantastic. It's one of my favourite albums ever. This isn't even close. Dudes, I generally appreciate "progression", but it's not always the best thing.
09:57 PM on 01/10/11
#6
XSTAYGOLDX
Sorceror Supreme
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can't wait to hear this.
03:10 AM on 01/11/11
#7
topshelfsquad
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This was largely my sentiments when I first heard early demos for it as well (sheesh, nearly a year ago now... this EP's been a long time coming). I definitely initially missed the grit that came along with the earlier material and what initially made this band so enjoyable for me to begin with. This EP has grown on me so much since then though. but hey, who am I?
07:57 AM on 01/11/11
#8
richardliesse
absolutely
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My Heart to Joy > La Dispute

(uneccesary, I know. I love this band though.)
09:02 AM on 01/11/11
#9
InaGreendase
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Real Talk? It's not that polished. Or dumbed-down.

Weird album picks. I'd say this is just closer to the PA noodle-emo revival stuff (By Surprise, Hightide Hotel), albeit slightly popper.
09:32 AM on 01/11/11
ikikwe
I'm looking for the upsides
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Real Talk? It's not that polished. Or dumbed-down.

Weird album picks. I'd say this is just closer to the PA noodle-emo revival stuff (By Surprise, Hightide Hotel), albeit slightly popper.
Yeah I agree with that sentiment. If anything, I'd say Snowing or Glocca Morra as a RIYL. Good shit regardless.

Also, Hightide Hotel is incredible.
10:04 AM on 01/11/11
ALEXMASONRULES
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After you give this a 79 you then RIYL Man Overboard and Midtown? Something is wrong here. terribly wrong.
10:40 AM on 01/11/11
lew_1987
The desperation's gone.
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Why is my third track on this EP called 'Phil Ruddich'?
10:57 AM on 01/11/11
Jumpoff
Jews for Cheeses
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Why is my third track on this EP called 'Phil Ruddich'?
Snowing reference perhaps?

These RIYL's are completely off to be honest.
11:25 AM on 01/11/11
thirtyyearwar
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There are a couple leaks of the EP going around that have incorrect song titles
12:05 PM on 01/11/11
lew_1987
The desperation's gone.
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There are a couple leaks of the EP going around that have incorrect song titles
I bought it.
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