ALBUM REVIEW: Pity Sex – White Hot Moon

The term “emo revival” is thrown around a lot these days, and more often than not it is met by cynicism and a sense that the word emo and the heartbroken dudes that come along with it, is something that should be left in 2005. Whilst there’s reason behind the cynicism, it’s bands such as Pity Sex that are proving that there is still a place for emo, and that it is a genre that can look past the teen angst and become something more mature.

White Hot Moon picks up right where 2013 debut Feast of Love left off. Opening with A Satisfactory World For Reasonable People, the familiar fuzz of Britty Drake and Brennan Greaves’ guitars blend well as both Drake and Greaves trade off their vocals throughout the intriguing opener.

Most Pity Sex songs are perceived to fit the stereotypical heartbroken cliché, but it’s not until you start to delve deeper that you begin to appreciate the weight of the band’s lyrics. Rather than the standard method of singing from the perspective of the wounded victim, the band trade off vocals to create a story, it works wonderfully on this record, especially with Burden You. The song sees a back and forth between Drake and Greaves that results in the damning line’s: “I’ll never say ‘I loved you’ because you know I still do. I’ll always think of your lips, when I’m moving mine against his.” It’s a hard hitting line that is evocative of the entire record.

Whilst the signature Pity Sex sound is still present on White Hot Moon it is worth mentioning that things are a whole lot cleaner, the production allows the guitars to fuzz and the percussion to dominate throughout, but also allows for the vocals to breath. There are occasional muffled moments, but the standard mumbled verses and bellowing chorus’ work a whole lot better this time around.

The record features several singalong moments, and perhaps the most prevalent is in Bonhomie. Third on the record, the track starts as your standard Pity Sex song, Greaves’ vocals muffle along to a solitary guitar, but then the track kicks in. It’s fast paced, and gets its hooks in you almost instantly. Whilst the band don’t stray too far from their sound throughout the record, it’s a nice change of pace.

There’s a real sense of maturity on White Hot Moon, and the most glaring evidence of this is Plum. Plum is one of the few tracks on the record that doesn’t focus on love and relationships, but instead, death. The track focuses on loss and sees Drake tell a heart wrenching tale of her parents. The song is raw and serves somewhat as a ballad, as Drake sings along to nothing but her guitar, before the band bursts in for the final few lines, creating something moving yet enthralling.

Overall White Hot Moon isn’t anything revolutionary, in fact, it’s more of the same. However, in this case, more of the same isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Pity Sex’s second outing is powerful and emotional, and a reason to take the so called emo revival a little more seriously.


Standout Tracks: Burden You, Plum, Bonhomie

For Fans Of: The World is a Beautiful Place…, Balance and Composure, Walleater

Written by Daniel Rourke