Long Knives – This Is Your Life

  • Cole Faulkner posted
  • Reviews

Long Knives

This Is Your Life - Count Your Lucky Stars Records

Oakland, California indie-punk act Long Knives join the growing crowd of female-fronted and male-backed bands moving into the spotlight.  The release of their debut EP, This Is Your Life, highlights the range of pop-infused, guitar-lead melodies that stem from inspirations like Mock Orange, Candy Hearts, Hot Rod Circuit and The Get Up Kids.  The four-song disc’s energetic draw doesn’t do much to push the envelope, but the overarching polish and tight musicianship should at least initiate a double take by those pursuing a first listen.  

Opening with “Bones,” the band wastes no time in laying down an entrance of buzzing guitars and sugary vocals.  The song plays out with just the right amount of jangle in their chords and roughness of their riffs.  A chorus bolstered by tandem male vocals heightens the mood in no time, with lots of crunchy guitars to counter Kris Moya’s outspoken yet girlish tone.  Only on “Unwelcome Guest” does she comes across mildly whiny in her clear alignment with fellow emo-revival peers.  Long Knives are at their best when tapping into their modest alternative side, which features a core of forceful guitars supplemented by the twinkly and understated  sounds of what other bands under the Count Your Lucky Stars Records banner typically default to.  For instance, “Home” showcases lengthy stints of bridged guitars filling the gap between chorus and verse under the  a reduced and more dramatic tempo.  

This Is Your Life makes Long Knives out as a modest indie-punk upstart with a promising future.  The four-song EP focuses mostly on foundational enjoyment and continuity rather than gunning right for the hooks, even if the band clearly knows the value of a catchy tune.  All in all, This Is Your Life is a compelling albeit simple introduction to a familiar formula handled with enough care to make fans of newcomers and genre junkies.