Somos / Sorority Noise - Split [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Somos / Sorority Noise

Split [7-inch] (2014)

Bad Timing Records

I'm not a fan of splits with bands doing one or two songs each. Three, at least, or else!!! That rant aside, there's not much to really bitch about when bands manage to be concise and impactful in these little bursts. That's exactly what Somos and Sorority Noise do here in just under ten minutes. They both continue to show deviations and evolution from sounds fans attached themselves to in the past and by extension, they continue to prove that it's good to bat outside the cages once in a while.

If you're familiar with Somos, then you'd know how gritty their pop-punk demo was in 2012. And more so, how it informed their more catchy and infectious Temple of Plenty earlier this year. It showed their range as they toned down the aggressive nature into more crunchy, anthemic pop-punk on this 2014 album which proved a brave move for their debut LP. It was very mid-tempo which makes these two songs even more gutsy because they're head-nodding, slow, twinkly jams. Somos dial it down fully and bring out their most reflective, emo aspect.

This change of pace is very refreshing. Michael Fiorentino's vocals adapt so well in the lower end of the rock spectrum and help make "Letters From An Absent Future" match the ensuing "Back And Forth" well. They feel like one long somber jam chopped in half and judging from this, Somos clearly have something different up their sleeve for their next release. If you kept tabs on them though, and trace right back to their earliest days, you'll see they were laying the templates down for this shift and now, it's awesome seeing it all unfold. Side note: Fiorentino hit some fucking high notes here that had me in awe. Brilliant piece of experimental bravado for a band that could well follow Jimmy Eat World's accessible and mainstream pull.

Sorority Noise also displayed a shift from their pop-punk M.O. a while back. They seem to be gearing down for more thoughtful, melodic tunes and the non-complexity shows here. "Dobranoc" comes off like a very shoegaze interlude that cascades into the alternative/indie-punk aura of "Wesleyan's Best Dressed". Both contrast each other despite feeling matched up and it's a great balance - which again they've always showed. These demo-like songs strip down the themes of unwelcomed change and make for a neat listen. What the split ends up doing is ushering you to the microscope and telling you...just why you should be keeping tabs on these dudes. Both bands are very smartly poised for bigger things. Musically adept but jeez, I wished they'd dropped just a bit more ink into the water here to show why we should be taking more notes.