EP REVIEW: EMP!RE – Our Simple Truths

Following on from their 2013 release Where The World Begins, alt-rock outfit EMP!RE have returned with new EP Our Simple Truths. Coming in at just 18 minutes in length it leaves us anticipating an all killer, no filler release. Spoiler: there’re crashing choruses, rumbling drums and hooked filled guitars in the bucketload.

Opening track and single Hands & Tongues sets the scene with a polished, alt-rock riff-filled introduction. Joe Green’s vocals flutter in tempo and pitch supporting the musical backing faultlessly. Soaring power within this track shows that EMP!RE aren’t going to let us off easily during this release, especially when we’re hit with a dose of raw screamed vocals which propel the track further. Sparrows takes a more upbeat approach, a festival friendly track that would sound insane in an open field. An aggressive musical punch in the face is prominent here, shining through the vocals and making this a promising track.

Sights provides a dose of pop-punk: a stuttering stop-start introduction, however, becomes quite frankly irritating and a little dull after its second repeat. Becoming the standout of the track – and even the release – is the fiery, emotionally powerful chorus. Lyrics “there may be sunshine on the other side” give a sense of hope and belief that things can get better, something a whole lot of people need to remember in times of need. Heading towards the end of the release is Patchwork and Bone, the most mainstream track on the release. But mainstream doesn’t make it the best material on the EP, as the track fades to the back of our minds almost instantly. We want more from EMP!RE having already showed they’re capable of it in the previous tracks, and this doesn’t live up to our expectations.

Closing track Sweet Apollo has the task of restoring our faith and fortunately it does this with ease: an upbeat and pop-vibed track that urges you to dance. Flowing smoothly with Green’s vocals enticing and easy on the ear it’s a sing-along friendly effort which sends the release out on a massive high. It’s a little different to what we expected EMP!RE to provide us, but the catchy “I’m a sheep, you’re a shepherd” works surprisingly well.

With this being such a short release we can’t help but want more, just as EMP!RE seem to be getting into their stride the EP draws to a close. They might not be breaking any genre barriers, but the foundations have been laid for the follow-up to be explosive and hopefully a little more memorable.


Standout Tracks: Sweet Apollo, Sparrows

For Fans Of: Biffy Clyro, Coheed and Cambria, Glassjaw

Written By: Nicola Craig

Nicola Craig
Head of Live with an unwavering love for the seaside, live music and writing about others instead of myself. Twitter: @nicolalalalar