After some tricky beginnings and a long hiatus, Japanese pop punkers Coast to Coast are back with their debut five track EP Lessons Learned, a release which attempts to set out their easycore credentials
A word to describe this release would definitely be textbook. This band love their scene and they know their stuff, but their simplistic arrangements make it clear they are still finding their feet. Lessons Learned has the upbeat guitar, hammering breakdowns, catchy lyrics and sing-a-longs that make it good, but also make it like a template of a lot of pop punk bands.
The EP is neatly divided between the heavier easycore side and the more basic pop-ey side, with the former being the better half. Second track ‘Gravity’ has got some bite to it and you can’t resist but move to it just a little bit. The cleans and screams are both on point, building up to create a fully stage ready sound, even if the lyrics can only be described as occasionally catchy.
Between them, tracks ‘Gravity’ and ‘Veil, Visions, Fading’ provide plenty of bite. The former is bursting with angst and stage-ready energy, while the latter’s down-low enticing sound is irresistible. The cleans and screams mould together nicely and, while the lyrics themselves are a little simplistic, the chorus’ can be catchy as hell.
Penultimate track ‘Destinations’ shows the lead vocals in their best light, and marks itself as the highlight of the EP with chugging breakdowns and heartening chorus. What we have is Lesson Learned’s most realized track by far with fuller structures, better energy and a more upbeat sound.
Whilst this EP does have good bits, overall it’s lacking in any real identity or flair and won’t be becoming a classic any time soon. Coast To Coast have potential, however, to expand their horizons and try and find their own niche of pop punk where they can start to create something a little more unique.