Written by: Andrea Janov, CC2K Music Editor
So, I put on this album and was accosted by super hardcore screaming vocals, and thought, “Hmmm, interesting, not really my thing though”. Mid-track the slightest bit of melody comes in, and then I was intrigued. Then, track two, Grown Up Stuff kicks on, and holy shit, I was in love. Full of passion and intense music, this song is everything you can ever want in hardcore.
The rest of the album incorporates hardcore and melody in such an organic way that I almost feel bad for not digging the first few seconds immediately. Next to Grown Up Stuff, the title track, Live Fast, Die Whenever is a high point of the record, there is just something in the hook that you cannot let go of. No Boyfriends is a surprising yet fantastic ending to the album. It is the slowest track, which eases us out of the experience that we just had, but it is no less intense that the hardcore tracks that preceded it.
Above all, this record is passionate, the music is solid, and the vocals are intense, with never a drop in energy.
I was searching for words to aptly articulate the feeling of this album when I realized that it was a moot endeavor. The power of this record is in its simple style, its honesty voice, and its quiet intensity. The power is in the quiet, in the mounting intensity, in the breath, in the inflection, in the moment between chords.
Tyler Daniel Bean establishes the sound of the album in the first track, Flowers At My Feet. It begins quiet and subdued building in intensity to a moment of arrested explosion before dropping back in to the quiet, only to fully explode with powerful drums. At this point we think that we have reached the climax of the track, but we are pleasantly surprised to find out that we are wrong when these great screamo vocals come out of nowhere (and feel so right).
The rest of the album incorporates all these elements folk, rock, screamo, and new wave. My favorite track on the album is To Give Up Hope At Twenty Years, it starts simple then progresses to a garage rock distortion to the music and screamo sneak in, all in this smoldering type of intensity.