Release Date: Apr 22, 2016
Record label: Top Shelf Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
Sorority Noise frontman Cam Boucher hit a wall when he first started playing music — at least, that’s what he told Washed Up Emo founder Tom Mullen in a video interview last August. “I got stale and I didn’t know what to write about anymore,” Boucher said. That is, until he submerged himself in the emo of yore. “Then I opened this world of, like, ‘No, you can talk about your real feelings, not trying to relate to an audience, strictly yourself.
It interested me in an interview with lead vocalist of Sorority Noise, Cameron Boucher, that he was suddenly writing songs strictly for himself and feeling a bit selfish about it. With that in mind, I couldnâ€™t wait to hear the forthcoming EP, It Kindly Stopped For Me because who doesnâ€™t want to hear what kind of songs a great artist would write for themselves?â€œFourceâ€ is one of the most personal songs Boucher may have written. As he narrates in spoken word the steps he takes to his friendâ€™s grave, we see the deeper side of Boucher.
Sorority Noise’s 2015 album Joy, Departed culminated in an awakening. On "Using," songwriter Cameron Boucher saves the album’s biggest, grungiest riff for an explosive declaration: "I stopped wishing I was dead!" The sentiment is played mostly for celebration, and Boucher shouts it with palpable joy. But it’s also a correction, an indictment of emo’s long history of glorifying depressive thinking, and an implied apology for his complicity in that.
Arriving a year after 2015's breakthrough Joy, Departed LP, It Kindly Stopped for Me is emo outfit Sorority Noise's unlikely follow-up. A brief and utterly lonesome four-song EP, it plays almost like a real-time grief reaction from frontman Cameron Boucher who, in quick succession, lost four friends to suicide. In truth, this home-recorded acoustic release feels far more like a solo effort than anything by the dynamic Connecticut-based quartet who delivered Joy, Departed's cascading indie rock crescendoes.
So far, Sorority Noise have been a pretty instantly gratifying listen when it comes to buoyant, emo-tinged pop-rock, at least among fans of the style's early practitioners, like Brand New circa Your Favourite Weapon. But this Connecticut group's latest recording, the four-song, unplugged effort It Kindly Stopped for Me, makes for a less instantly gratifying record that may take a certain kind of hurt to really understand. Devotees who are familiar with the band's deeper cuts, like the 2013 two-song EP, Quiet Hours, ought to recognize this side of Sorority Noise.
It's emotional... Beautifully intentioned as the songs on this new EP from Sorority Noise are, the execution isn’t half dreary. Inspired by the complex emotions stirred by the passing of friends and vocalist Cameron Boucher’s ultra-personal mental health struggles, there’s a thick, smothering sadness in the sentiment that isn’t helped by the bare bones musical backdrop.It’s a disappointing, day and night affair compared to the soaring triumph of last year’s ‘Joy, Departed’ and a listen that will only please the most commited of devotees or fans of the kind of music that soundtracks fey, hipster indie movies and cutesy television commercials.