Out of New Jersey bursts forth We Stole the Weekend, an explosive 4-piece pop-punk/post-hardcore fusion band. Their debut EP packs a punch that will have you head banging and jumping around like a 22-year-old at a basement-dwelling easycore show.
When I heard they were a pop-punk/post-hardcore group, I was a bit skeptical. Typically this kind of genre melding can go horribly south- often times you can hear the rift between the band members as they draw from different influences. Upon listening, I soon learned that this was not the case whatsoever. The fluidity with which both genres are blended by all of the members is phenomenal and perhaps the mark of true musicianship.
“Didn’t Mean to Offend” kicks off the album and clearly displays the band’s instrumental influence from post-hardcore. Driving percussion from “core” drums and melodic riffs mark this song. Vocally, I was blown away. Melodic guitar riffs and driving “core”-esque drums are paired with David Vinder’s raw vocals, creating a musical time-warp that is reminiscent of old Taking Back Sunday. Backing screams are lightly added in, which introduces the bands easycore edge.
“Realistic Expectations” follows next, in which the band flexes their pop-punk muscle. Vinder’s vocals are clearly pop-punk influenced, sounding like a blend of Anthony Green and Joe Taylor of Knuckle Puck. The instrumentals, particularly the guitars, are in a style similar to that of Such Gold.
Up next is “Alligator Soup”, another display of pop-punk might, with a heavier twist that produces a sound much like Four Year Strong’s, but with an early 2000s alternative rock twist. Riffage in this song is heavier and features a tastefully light melodic solo from the lead guitarist.
Following that is “Before the Storm”, a pop-punk ballad that features light variations in percussion, such as handclapping and tambourine. The outro, however, is where the lead guitarist flexes his post-hardcore might with a melodic overlay that reminds you of their split-genre fusion style and ultimately sets up for their next song, “Falling Out With Susan”.
“Falling Out With Susan” is where the band returns to their heavier roots- lyrically and instrumentally, with brilliant post-hardcore/alternative rock riffs giving the listener a return to their melodic tonality (complete with a slammin’ breakdown!)
The last track “Bill Does Something Else” is definitely where the listener can hear the band’s multiple influences crash together. Vinder combines both styles to create a vocally diverse song that screams “fusion.” The instrumentals alone are proof, too. Pop-Punk riffs merge to fast-paced punk riffs and are crafted in duality with the melodic post-hardcore style that makes for an almost alternative/arena-rock style, but not quite. But they make it work musically. Several styles collide with one another, making for a musically diverse and nearly unclassifiable-yet enjoyable- sound. It’s Punk-fusion mayhem in this song, and it works. If anything, this is probably their most interesting track. It’s as if We Stole The Weekend couldn’t decide what style to pick, so they played all of them, and made it work.
Overall, We Stole the Weekend is a pretty exceptional fusion band. They definitely pull off the fusion of genres as they carve out their own unique niche within the genres while clearly paying homage to their respective influences. Their standout tracks are definitely “Didn’t Mean to Offend”, “Realistic Expectations”, and “Bill Does Something Else”. The album as a whole, however, is absolutely worth a listen. This EP won’t just steal your weekend; it’ll steal your speakers, your train of thought, and your hearing. And we’re glad to let these guys take it all. This is a pretty exceptional album, especially for a debut EP in such an overcrowded mix of genres. I can’t wait to see what these guys do next in the future. (Katt Hass)
For Fans Of: Four Year Strong, Taking Back Sunday, Sparks the Rescue