Hold Tight! - Call the Zoo (Cover Artwork)

Hold Tight!

Call the Zoo (2011)


Clocking in at a whopping six minutes, Richmond, VA's Hold Tight! combines teenage angst, melody and aggression to concoct a delicious blend of melodic punk with their newest release, Call the Zoo. This tasty melodic morsel is reminiscent of many of the classics in the genre–Saves the Day, Lifetime, Kid Dynamite, Hot Water Music–yet it still stamps an individual style onto the listener's forehead.

The party's out and the authorities have been informed, scouring the streets for this rager of a release. Filled with vicious and speedy songs, all clocking in at just under a minute, "Meade Skeleton Birthday Party" the shortest at 59 seconds, Call the Zoo promises you will wake up passed out naked in your neighbors' yard, wondering what happened and reaching for that morning hangover beer. Rapturous in their portrayal of youth and energy, Hold Tight! captures what it means to be young, punk and having fun.

A troubled mind bursting with confusion is conveyed in Hold Tight!'s words as they expresses their woes against growing up, society and the changing faces around them. "I'd call myself an artist, but truth is I just need to complain. 'Cause I hate growing up, and I just can't handle change. Please don't change," rant the two vocalists of the band in a call-and-response style, showing the importance and skilled use of dynamics in the band.

The song "Power Converter" strongly juts out from the rest as its tom-heavy-filled intro forcefully takes hold of the listener, like a bully on the schoolyard, then lets go as the band goes into top speed. As if escaping this monstrous beast of a riff, then sadly falling back into its clutches, the band revisits the intro but with a more fluid, cymbal-based backbeat. Bratty, childlike, yet clever lyrics are tauntingly sang at the beginning and end of the song: "Teacher said I'm wasting my potential, but I can only potentially be me," as a giant middle finger slowly goes up in the middle of class.

If you are growing up, have a short attention span and a love for catchy melodies, then this release is for you. If you are looking for something groundbreaking, earth-shattering and life-changing, this might not be for you. However, it is a solid melodic punk release that shows potential in a very young band.