The End Of An Error
Houston Calls place the bait directly in the trap with a weak example of modern-era emo/power-pop on their second full-length, The End Of An Error. It highlights the congruency between “sophomore” and “sophomoric,” with the band plastering static riffs and purposeless piano against unmemorable melodies. The chorus of “Life Won’t Wait” flares with a few sparks as the band borrow from the All-American Rejects’ self-titled album in devastating portions. In case the song title wasn’t already a helpful clue, “Stay With Me Tonight” is injected with an unhealthy dose of melodrama. Bonus track “Dork Thinks He’s Gonna Drown” has a long-awaited, more persistent swagger about it, though it doesn’t necessarily make the song any more enjoyable. Sure, Houston Calls have dual singers, but both sound like dropouts of whatever vocal academy Fueled By Ramen is running.
At least on the band’s debut, 2005’s A Collection Of Short Stories, any deficiencies Houston Calls may have had could hide behind Ed Rose’s charming, stereotypically Midwestern-emo production. But Mark Weinberg’s no-bullshit approach thins things out and confronts the band on what they’re lacking: A whole lot of musical creativity and authentic songwriting. (DRIVE-THRU) Brian Shultz
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