Single Review: Burnt Tapes - "Greek Wood"
Wiretap Records/Lockjaw Records
The punk scene is made up of many different sub-categories, but within each of them there’s emotionally charged music with a strong emphasis on raw honesty. Melodic punk has always excelled at balancing the proper style of instrumentation against heartfelt lyrics in their efforts to enhance the song depth - think The Lawrence Arms, Alkaline Trio, Smoking Popes, and Hot Water Music. Along similar lines are the self-labeled, “regret punk” band, Burnt Tapes. The London based group has been creating a substantial amount of buzz through relentless touring since the release of 2014 demo Wasted History. Following last year’s release of their debut full-length Never Better, the group opens their next chapter with “Greek Wood.” “Thought I was done with all the sad songs, thought you were tired of tearing my broken heart apart,” the opening lines sing as they pull you in, but it’s the unconventional songwriting that perked our ears during our first listen. By not following all the typical formulas, the twists and turns become exciting and unpredictable. The melody is driving, but also knows exactly when to flip the switch and allow the emotion of specific lines to grab you, such as when the guitars drop their power to only a simple strumming over the lines, “Then maybe it’s time to be alone, maybe it’s time to be alone.” On our second listen, though, we discovered how well-written the lyrics are as they use strong comparatives to explain the knowing feeling that your losing your relationship; “Jet black coffee that stains your teeth, fading white like your memory.” Where many songs of this subject nature never give closure, this refreshingly goes the opposite of the norm; “Is there anything left of you and me? Is there anything left, is there anything left? No, there’s nothing left of you and me!” “Greek Wood” delivers what’s always made melodic punk stand out. It’s cleverly written, perfectly delivered, and takes so many dynamic risks to purposely stretch outside the conventional box that you can’t help but take notice!