Batten Down The Hatches/Random Holiday - Split (2012)

Split EPs used to be one of my least favourite things in the world of music. I used to always think to myself, "Why not just a write a four-six track EP by yourself?" However, I really enjoy them now. Why? Because there's more variety. More importantly, almost every time I listen to a split, I find a new band. In this case, Batten Down The Hatches teamed up with Random Holiday - a band that I had never heard of prior to this release - and created one of the best pop punk splits of 2012 that could contend with the Citizen/Turnover split.

Batten Down The Hatches starts this release with their instrumental track titled "In Case We Haven't Met". Even though it's just an instrumental intro that's less than a minute in length, "In Case We Haven't Met" sets the bar very high for Batten Down The Hatchet's half of the split. Their EP that they released in the spring, Beginnings, was a very solid release that had a bit of an "easycore" vibe to it while the newer stuff sounds much more mature and it starts to show just a few short seconds into the split.

The other two songs on this split by Batten Down The Hatches are titled "Unique New York" and "In Case You Haven't Left". After some feedback, an excellent pop punk riff kick-starts "Unique New York". The chords sound great, and with the addition of melody throughout the song, it sounds spectacular. The lyrical content of this track reminds me of Real Friends while the music sounds like a mix of Major League and Giants At Large, especially when it reaches the culminating outro. "In Case You Haven't Left" starts off in a similar way that "Unique New York" does, but it's even more impressive. "In Case You Haven't Left" is a raw, energetic, and catchy pop punk song and Batten Down The Hatches maintains that style for the majority of the song.

After being blown away by Batten Down The Hatches' eight minutes of perfection, I didn't know what to expect from Random Holiday. As soon as the first note of "Where Things End" came in, I knew that I was going to thoroughly enjoy this half of the split as well. Just like Batten Down The Hatches does on their half of the split, Random Holiday incorporates several melodic riffs into the verses and chorus of "Where Things End". Just for good measure, they also throw in a little solo near the end of the song that sounds great!

The final track of the split, "For Punam: My Regards", is my personal favourite. With pounding drums, fast-paced riffing, strong vocals, and an all around upbeat tempo, I'm sure that "For Punam: My Regards" will be a favourite for many other listeners as well. Also, I have a feeling that almost everyone that listens to this split will have the opening line of the chorus, "You'll still feel better when your head hits the floor", stuck in their head for days.

From the way that the split starts with the incredibly emotional instrumental titled "In Case We Haven't Met" until the way that it goes out with a bang on "For Punam: My Regards", I was extremely impressed. I couldn't possibly ask for anything more because it's already perfect as is. If you want to decide that for yourself, it's currently streaming on Easycore, and it will be released on December 1st through Meadowbrook Records.

It will be interesting to see what both of these bands come up with next, but until then, I'm going to continue to listen to this split on a daily basis. That way I'll be more than familiar with these bands' tunes so when they eventually make their ways to southern Ontario, I'll be able to scream all the lyrics right back at them.

Links: Batten Down The Hatches - Random Holiday - Stream - Pre-order

By Steven Pongrac ~ Me Gusta Reviews



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