Friday, August 10, 2012

Currently Listening: Collide With The Sky by Pierce The Veil (2012)

Last night you ended up in Palm Springs dancing on tables...what am I supposed to be, impressed?

Disclaimer up front, Pierce The Veil are an American post-hardcore band. This is the story of me and Pierce The Veil.

It takes a lot for the jaded emo hearts of Leah and I to get excited over hearing a new band these days. At 25 and 29 respectively we've been there and done that and bought countless t-shirts since before the scene exploded in to teenage haircuts on a high street near you, we witnessed the rise of the mediocre and quite happily dump most bands with a similar sound to Pierce The Veil in to the third rate 3rd generation category. And dump is definitely the correct word, anything smaller than a landfill wouldn't be able to contain the sheer volume of mediocre to shit.

Have you ever heard the "Punk Goes..." compilations? Up to two dozen punk, emo and hardcore bands cover songs from a selected category, classic albums include Punk Goes Pop (giving the world the incredible Stretch Armstrong cover of the Pink song Get The Party Started) and Punk Goes Crunk (the All Time Low version of Umbrella is the definitive version if you ask me.) Well, Pierce The Veil covered the classic Blue Oyster Cult song Don't Fear The Reaper (no cow bell unfortunately) on Punk Goes Classic Rock and I guess you might say we were infatuated.

Summer 2010/2011 featured almost non-stop play of their second album Selfish Machines (2010) thanks to some infectiously catchy melodies, the combination of Vic Fuentes unique vocals and lyrics and so many sing-a-long, heart on your sleeve moments you're forever declaring "this is the greatest emo song ever" which is topped off by actually the greatest emo song ever, complete with most definitive emo song title ever, Bulletproof Love.

We live in one of those cities that are never visited by bands that you want to see, merely endless streams of pop megastars and stadium rock (hey Perth is the home of AC/DC you know) yet by some small quirk of fate Pierce The Veil chose the moment we fell in love with them as the moment they would tour with one of those mediocre piles of shit I was discussing above and play a Perth show whilst they were at it. Happiness rained down upon us, tickets were bought and we attended what has to be the strangest gig we've ever experienced.

The Astor theatre (below) is a beautiful old Art Deco building that is the home of the Perth Revelation International Film Festival and also double as a concert venue. I have two words, no three words that sum up our experience: PARENTS, SEATS, POPCORN.

There were kids eating popcorn at an post-hardcore show, they were all thirteen or there abouts so had to take their parents along and the classic cinema seating that is set back from the stage/screen by quite some way was filled with both parents and teenagers looking generally quite bored whilst they ate their popcorn, leaving the "dancefloor" largely empty.

Leah once saw The Wombats in a half empty church basement in Philadelphia but she says this one was much more bizarre.
But on to the new album, it was finally released at the end of last month and initially I was unable to listen to anything else for days at a time so excited I was that it wasn't total garbage as I had feared. Pierce The Veil are not one album wonders! Most bands make an album that gets a lot of attention then feel the need to get even more attention with their next album, in the process they remove everything unique and fun from their sound and hey presto you're back to sounding like Silverstein.

PTV actually got better, they took what they did well on the previous album and crafted an album filled with the sound of a band who has toured consistently for three years; it's tighter and harder, more energetic and there's just as many of those "this is the greatest song ever" moments after singing along at the top of your voice with your eyes closed that all great emo will do to you.

Low points are few and far between, the guest vocals of Jason Butler (letlive.) simply irritate me for no good reason other than he reminds me of that guy from Say Anything, who I hate listening to.

As I said at the top of the post, I'm too old for this but that isn't stopping me. Pierce The Veil are touring the UK whilst we're on holiday in September and you'll find Leah, our friend Kat and myself  towering over the sea of kids at Camden Underworld, throwing back the mojitos and wearing skinny jeans. Score!
Been there, done that, still buying the t-shirt AKA I'm too old for this shit

The first single released from the album was King For A Day and featured Kellin Quinn of Sleeping With Sirens, it is available for free here thanks to Fearless Records.

The second single, Bulls In The Bronx, has been embedded below thanks to those great guys over at Soundcloud.


  1. This used to be my favorite band when I listened to heaps and heaps of post hardcore. Recently listened to A Flair For The Dramatic and it held up pretty well. You look like a total BA in your PTV shirt and skinny jeans. I remember being that. The new songs are pretty great actually.

    1. Hey TKG the fact that you are 18 and over this whole post-hardcore thing confirms what I said twice in the review - I'm too old for this!
      But thats not gonna stop me.
      Also, and this speaks volumes for my pop-punk roots, Flair For The Dramatic is too hardcore for me!

      ps thanks for the compliment, Leah really wanted the t-shirt but she'll have to wait for the London show I guess.

    2. I still listen to some hardcore and most of my friends do still. I feel so lame when I tell people I like Fiona Apple and Spiritualized. Its great that you listen to what you like regardless of if you stick out a bit at the shows (I wear dress shirts and seem awkward at punk shows). Yeah Boy and Doll Face and Wonderless are a bit softer. Overall Selfish Machines is better. Also if you like PTV check out Isles and Glaciers it has the lead singer and drummer (but is a bit heavier at times).

    3. Dress sirts vs trucker shirts probably does seem out of place you're right Trevor. Fiona Apple certainly is the opposite end of the spectrum huh? I think everyone needs something chilled out in their lives. Did you see my previous music review post? Alec Ounsworth is very cool. But I don't own a t-shirt, yet.

  2. Hey, what's wrong with that music? If you like it, listen to it with pride, Toby.

    I listen to artists like Ellie Goulding, Robyn, Los Campesinos!, Bruno Mars, Sleigh Bells, and The Ting Tings. Full disclosure: My favorite album of 2011 would still be Lights - Ellie Goulding. Haters gonna hate. :)

    1. Josh do you not think that the longer Los Campesinos! have been recording the less fun they have become? I remember before their first album came out bedroom dancing on my own to their EP, it formed an early important part of my relationship with Leah infact. Now there's not so much bedroom dancing and more sitting and wondering why he's not having any fun now he's famous.

    2. Yeah, they've become less fun. I love every song on Hello Sadness, but if you just listen to "We Throw Parties, You Throw Knives", you can tell they're not as fun anymore. Their new work's a bit more mature and more contained, which isn't necessarily a good thing.