Violet - The Love / The Lust
Violet are one of those bands. You know the ones - they have two vocalists, one specialising in cleans, the other in harsher vocals - often shouts or screams. Often this makes for an amalgamation of genres, none of which done particularly well. Or, in simpler terms, a complete fucking mess.
Not in the case of Violet, though. Throughout The Love / The Lust they’ve drawn clear influences from the likes of Emarosa, Dance Gavin Dance, Memphis May Fire as well as their own personal music tastes, which the band say consist of a lot of R&B and pop, as well as metalcore and rock. It’s their appreciation of music as a whole, and especially of their influences, which they’ve channelled wholeheartedly into their debut album on Small Town Records.
As far as subject matter and lyrical content goes, there’s a very clear theme throughout the album of lost love, love longed for and, well, love in general. Whilst this is a typically overdone theme in any genre, Violet can be credited with approaching it honestly, at least, even if it’s not the most original of topics.
Clean vocalist Jordan is, as a general rule, a very strong vocalist with a hugely impressive range, but he does falter slightly on certain tracks. This is most noticeable on Her, which is overall a fairly weak track anyway, and definitely the lowest point in the album unfortunately. It seems rushed, not too well thought out and a little thrown together. Luckily the band rescue themselves in a huge way with follower Girls Like You, which is an upbeat, fast-tempo track with catchy singalongs and gang chants which will go down a storm should they choose to include this in future live set lists.
Speaking of live sets, the band have already shared a stage with the likes of Dance Gavin Dance, A Lot Like Birds, Closure In Moscow and Now Voyager, so despite this being their debut album, we’re definitely not talking about amateurs here. Having had the pleasure of seeing the band with a slightly different line-up supporting Closure In Moscow a while back, it’ll be interesting to see how the line-up change affects their live show.
We make it about half way through the album thinking Violet have found a formula that works for them and stuck rigidly to it, but then they throw in the game-changing The Old Die Young which really showcases their diversity and capability to think outside the box. Jordan features more heavily on this track than those previously, and as the band slow the tempo and get a little more serious with things, it seems to suit them. Perhaps a section which could be omitted would be the harsher vocals from Charlie earlier on in the track, but as more instruments gain volume, his sparse sections are perfectly suited. It’s just a shame more tracks with this much variation aren’t shown on the album.
The Love / The Lust as a whole isn’t a breathtaking affair by far, but Violet have paved the way for a very successful career. Their next steps are to spread the word about themselves, work on introducing more diversity to their work, and to really shape their own sound. It doesn’t seem like they’ll have much difficulty in doing this.