Massachusetts is obviously more well known for its metal and hardcore scenes, but theyve also got a pretty substantial stream of pop-punk bands churning out the hits as well. Half Hearted Hero is one of the upstart groups part of this surge. And here they offer up their debut full-length, Defining. Refining.
Half Hearted Hero fall in that middle of the road area between the two battlegrounds of pop-punk music. Theyre not a bubble-gum pop-punk band ala Fall Out Boy or New Found Glory. And theyre also not a traditional sounding band akin to Screeching Weasel or Descendents. The twelve songs that comprise Defining. Refining. land someplace much closer to the worlds of Osker, The Swellers, and Polar Bear Club which I guess is melodic punk, or not? I can see why some might consider them of the bubblegum variety though as the vocals are fairly sugary. Though the occasional roughness and shouting is mixed in too. Cuts like Meter? I Just Met Her! are quite enjoyable. If I had to point out one fault itd be that the album is fairly one-dimensional. I could use with a wider mixture of tempos in the music and a bit more vocal variety - even if its backups - to help break up the monotony.
Based on what I was told about Half Hearted Hero, I wasnt expecting much. But, to my surprise their performance here is much better than I expected it to be. Defining. Refining. is a decent debut effort.
6.0 / 10
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