Vacant Home are one of Australia’s best melodic hardcore bands, no question about it.
If you heard Vacant Home’s last EP, the emotionally intensive melodic hardcore musings of ‘Reflect, Respond‘ (released via Mutant League Records), then you’ll know that this Perth group do not shy away from the pains and experiences of their personal lives in the slightest.
Writing about their anxieties, the band’s collective mental health, as well as the shared stresses of their family and loved ones going through difficult times – whether medically or mentally or both – Vacant Home put it all down into their music for the listener to experience in their own way. Other than just writing really solid songs, that’s what makes this still young band stand out so much from the crowd, as evident by their first release of 2018, engrossing new single ‘Knife’s Edge‘.
Pulling strongly from other bands like Casey but still retaining their own identity, ‘Knife’s Edge‘ sees the WA five-piece lyrically and thematically teetering over the edge of an abyss of doubt. As the song details one’s own powerless thoughts when disaster strikes upon a loved one – whether by fate or by some twist of their own hand and vices – and you can’t be sure if they’re safe; if they’re even okay.
Lyrics like “And as I rode with you in the back of the ambulance/I stopped and I thought/Will I ever see you again?/Will you ever open your fucking eyes?” cut like the sharpest blade. Then, the song’s climatic and ever-building resolution of “I was so drained/You wear your scars but you’re still here breathing/My pulse is subdued/This was not in vain” sees such anxious situations reach their conclusion and that sometimes, things do indeed work out in the end. Even if the physical and mental scars from those challenging times still linger.
Following on from Vacant Home’s previous body of work, this new track sees a far stronger amplification of what already made their music click together nicely. The expansive atmospherics; thicker production, guitarist Jeremy Street’s warmer clean singing that’s not got a much greater presence in both the mix and songwriting; Callum McGivern’s gripping and impassioned screams; the intersecting guitar riffs and melodies of Alex Weston and Street; and the locked-in, propelling rhythm section of bassist Brodie Wilson and drummer Dejon Vlahov – every element of Vacant Home’s sound has been pushed that little bit further here and that makes all the difference.
Released earlier this week via the absolute legends over at Dreambound, have a listen to the beauty and distress of ‘Knife’s Edge‘ below:
Vacant Home’s release show for this new single goes down on April 14th at Perth’s Amplifier Bar with Idle Eyes, Homestate and Among Them.
Header PC: James Kilian