Hawthorne Heights - The Silence in Black and White (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Hawthorne Heights

The Silence in Black and White (2004)


A scene from this past year's spelling bee: "Your word is: ‘Hawthorne Heights.'" "Hawthorne Heights. H-O-R-R-I-B-L-E. Hawthorne Heights." "That's correct. We also would have accepted P-R-E-D-I-C-T-A-B-L-E and C-L-I-C-H-E." Now, see the cheesiness, likely derivativeness of, and overall lame quality of that insult? It's the same result of effort the band put into their Victory debut, The Silence in Black and White. At least they titled it appropriately; the former suggests a viable replacement for listening to the disc, and the latter reflects just how colorless the album is. To be fair though, the cover (again, appropriately) gives off more of a classic Game Boy-esque puke green. The band *might* be an accomplished quintet of mediocrity in the field of whiny, poppy, mid-tempo post-hardcore if they didn't have to throw in spare change screams, which are as forced as they come. They could probably come off like a second-rate Spitalfield at least, but with their cutesy little growls end up coming off like a third-rate Silverstein (both bands coincidentally mates on their label). Without even referencing the pop-screamo style, the band suffers in how much they water down the tempo. It's not even summer but they've already broken out the sprinklers. Lyrics? You need to ask? How about winners like "please don't use my letters to start your fires," "she cried all night, until the salt from her tears rusted shut her eyes," and "so cut my wrists and black my eyes so I can fall asleep tonight or die because you kill me." Time-signature changes…random jazz interludes with a brass section…grindcore drums…I just wish they'd do SOMETHING to differentiate themselves. AND NO, A PIANO DOESN'T COUNT (see "Blue Burns Orange" for a minimal amount of key pushing). They offer nothing new musically or otherwise. This isn't necessarily "I'd rather get my prostate checked" bad, but…well, then again, at least I can avoid cancer. Hmm…be back in a couple hours. MP3s
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