Apologies, I Have None - Black Everything (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Apologies, I Have None

Black Everything (2014)

Beach Community

Since the release of debut album London in 2012, Apologies, I Have None have become a fixture of the UK punk scene, quickly becoming one of the biggest and most respected bands. So in February when they announced that co-lead singer Dan Bond would be leaving, it came as somewhat of a shock.

Black Everything, a 4-track EP, is the first release by the band to feature Josh Mckenzie taking the lead on all tracks. The EP also shows a shift in style with the band moving further away from the straight-up catchy punk songs found on previous releases, and more towards a dark, emo-influenced sound.

"Raging Through a Thick and Heavy Darkness of a Bloodlust" immediately shows this when its quiet intro soon explodes into a massive-sounding gloomy section. Gloomy seems the best way to describe this record. Even in the lighter sections, it's obvious that there's still something dark in the background. The opening track picks up and falls down a million times, yet manages to avoid feeling repetitive or cliche.

The second track, "Two Bombs in a Box" is the most typically-Apologies, I Have None-sounding track on Black Everything, reminiscent of their classic "Sat in Vicky Park", immediately beginning with its soaring chorus of "how the fuck did I not see this coming? I should have known." The melodic guitar in the chorus along with the backing vocals and harmonies add a deeper sadness. The musical subtleties of throughout the EP make it great, adding some depth to the blunt, in-your-face lyrics.

"Coffee, Alcohol, Codeine, Repeat" and "The Clarity of Morning" round out the EP, with the former being perhaps the most dark of the record, lyrically ("from this point on, don't give a fuck about anyone. Don't give a fuck about anything."), and the latter building throughout into a climax in which there seems to be some closure, with lighter guitar work and some sort of lyrical acceptance.

Throughout, the lyrics are down and self-deprecating, the music is depressing and gloomy - and the combination is brilliant. For a band like Apologies, I Have None it could really have gone either way. It could seem like they were trying too hard to reinvent themselves, or it could seem like they were building on previous works. Luckily, this EP fits the latter and it will be exciting to see the direction of the next release.