If you enjoy tough guy or straight-edge hardcore, you’ll enjoy TAEA. If not, you won’t like this one bit. Two-sentence review; pretty awesome, eh?
But in all seriousness, TAEA sits on the fence between bands like Terror and Comeback Kid. They’ve got some speed and they’ve got some loudness, but have they got what it takes to thrust them into the upper echelon of an over-saturated genre? Unfortunately, the answer is no; however, that’s not to say that No Place Like Home is a terrible release. It’s simply average at best.
I feel that TAEA are at their best when playing at blistering tempos, for it is there that the band incorporates a little sense of melody into their guitar play. It makes the songs, which go by in the blink of an eye (eight songs in eighteen minutes), a little more interesting and holds the attention a bit more, but, like most novice hardcore groups, the band falls into the trap of the terrible chugga-chugga, intentionally mosh pit-inducing breakdown. Strategically placed almost once per minute, TAEA kills the tempo with that brainless riff that you’ve heard plenty of times over. It drags the band down into near-mediocre territory, which is a shame, because if they had kept up the speed and honed in on their strengths, this would be a much better record.
One more thing that makes No Place Like Home frustrating to listen to is the band’s awful timing. I don’t know what attributes to this, whether it’s the recording budget or the fact that these kids just don’t know how to play their instruments, but many of the transitions and fills are executed with horrible timing, with the band skipping what seems like countless beats to get back in sync with one another. It’s unforgivable, and hopefully the band can fine-tune this problem for their future releases.
There are three songs on this release that are solid hardcore tunes: Opener “No Way Out,” “Make With What You Have,” and the closer “I Won’t Forget.” The rest flew by without a second glance. This one is for die-hard fans of the genre only, but for those who are into this scene, I’d suggest lending an ear to TAEA, if only for an instant. It seems as if they’re making waves among the ranks of bands such as Kids Like Us and Guns Up!
Listen to four tracks off of No Place Like Home at the band’s Myspace page.