Review by Shannon Shumaker
Death Deserves A Name, the new EP from New Jersey’s Can’t Swim is the definition of refreshing. Blending elements of pop-punk, post-hardcore and indie rock, the sound on this five song EP is not one that can be pinpointed by one single sound or genre, making it a must listen.
Kicking things off is the aggressive opening track, “Your Clothes,” which starts with a very dirty and interesting sounding bass and drum part before standout echoey vocals come in. “Your Clothes” is a little chaotic and all over the place, transitioning from gritty bass work into soft vocals and guitar, then into huge, aggressive half-screams within seconds, but the second the chorus comes in, it all seems to just click. The aggressive and frustrated opening track definitely sets the tone for the EP, but don’t expect the same sound from all five tracks.
“Way It Was” picks things up where “Your Clothes” leaves off, with raw and wild vocals, but this song seems to also have some more structure than the first. Making “Way It Was” strong are the quieter moments, where everything cuts out except the vocals and guitar or drums. These quiet moments only make the bigger moments stand out even more. And then, contrasting well with the first two songs is “Right Choice,” which feels much brighter than the first two songs thanks to the beautiful vocal harmonies that carry it forward. This track and the following song, “Come Home” have a very strong sense of longing. “Right Choice” and “Come Home” also provide some more structure for the EP, showing us another side of Can’t Swim.
Closing out the EP is the title track, which sounds unlike everything else on the EP. With echoey clean guitar and smooth, soft vocals, “Death Deserves A Name” stands out compared to the grittiness of the other songs, and it is quite possibly the riskiest move that Can’t Swim could have made for their closing track, but thankfully, it also totally works. Instead of making the EP feel disconnected or off, it leaves you lingering for more, waiting to see what Can’t Swim do next, whether it’s on another EP or (hopefully) and promisingly diverse full-length.
Listen to "Your Clothes"
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