January 14, 2014 - Topshelf
It wasn’t really that long ago, but ’90s emo has been enjoying something of a (wait for it) revival recently, its sounds and sentiments being resurrected by a host of younger bands. One of those doing it best is Orlando, Florida, five-piece You Blew It!. Because while their name might suggest they deal in juvenile pop-punk, this second full-length, produced by Into It. Over It.’s Evan Weiss, is actually an assured burst of raw, heartfelt emotion that confronts the pains and pleasures of growing up—of falling in and out of love, losing touch with old friends, of the present, as always, turning into the past far too quickly. Partially, that’s due to the torn, bruised vocals of Tanner Jones, which seem aged with a lifetime of losing battles, but the gruff yet melodic, urgent yet intricate instrumentation that carries it is just as vital. The result is songs like opener “Match & Tinder,” which creaks with urgent desperation, the more calming, soothing tones of “House Address,” with its shades of Sunny Day Real Estate earnestness and the bitterness and regret that run through the gruff, angular strains of “Rock Springs.” Yet there’s defiance and hope, too, not least in closer “Better To Best,” a timely, uplifting reminder that no matter how bad things seem, wounds do heal. If albums like this are part of the healing process, then even better.