The latest EP from Empty Lungs doesn’t waste any time in getting down to business. No foreplay, just straight into the action. Wham, bam, thank you mam, bent over a barrel and a good slap on the arse too. Empty Lungs mix of punk and post hard-core bashes down the door with the standout Until The Day We Die. It rockets at the listener with super tight drumming and a bass line that propels the song along with a furious gusto. The shouted refrain on the chorus lends the song a huge anthemic quality. This track doesn’t waste any time implanting itself in the mind and has ‘hit’ written all over it.
While Until The Day We Die was a quick hit Nothing Left to Lose takes it’s time to work its way into the consciousness. The verse has a terrific melody which is littered with hooks and without losing any of the bands trademark edge. Upon multiple listens, it’s arguably the stand out track on the EP. If the EP had continued in the same breathless fashion as the first three songs, it would have been repetitive and disposable. However Empty Lungs have the good sense to slow it down a notch for Long Road Home which has undulating feel, numerous peaks and bristles with intensity.
While these three songs formed the highlights of the EP, the other three tracks didn’t stir the soul in the same fashion. Running in Circles, Release The Lifeboats’ & Stand Up all hurtle along urgently but they lack the killer hooks to be truly memorable songs. These particular songs are too straightforward and predictable. The latter two songs even after substantial repeat listens, sadly fail to grasp like for example Until The Day We Die. This EP could have been pretentious 90’s style aping American frat rock but Empty Lungs have shown enough substance to rise above this. Though not everything on the ‘Stand-Up’ EP works, what does is infectious and bodes well for future Empty Lungs releases.