Comprised of two-thirds of the final iteration of Select Start, The Weathers finds the remaining members of their former band carrying forward with what seems to be a very similar creative mindset. Maintaining the care that went into writing the intricately crafted songs that made up last year’s fantastic The New Atlantic, this quartet has released the next spectacular chapter of their career. The Weathers, while short, brings back the modern vintage aesthetic and manages to keep it fresh through powerful songwriting and great musicianship.
Album opener “If You Love Me” picks up right where “The (Pretty) Good Life” left off on The New Atlantic, as if this EP is the second half of a full-length. Clocking in at just over a minute and a half, this love song fits in some gorgeous harmonies between vocalists Joe Guerra and Daniel Lancaster, a nice little piano break, and some great guitar and drum parts. If you’re like me and chose to listen to the two EPs back-to-back, this track works just as well as an interlude as it does an introduction, bringing about a rather positive vibe and immediately dashing any thought that the now-smaller group might have lost any quality in their transition to being The Weathers.
Second track “Myself to Blame” starts off with a bit of a rock feel, which quickly withdraws to an almost-acapella line from Guerra before everything kicks back in with tons of energy as he trades lines with Lancaster. Vocal swells and harmonies throughout keep the retro sound going, but biting lines, drum fills and guitar parts help to make this into a rather catchy, yet hard-hitting modern sort of track. “Completely” tones down the energy level a bit, with a slightly slower tempo and more reserved instrumentation throughout the verses which eventually build up into a bigger chorus. The finger snaps that start off the guitar solo section are a fantastic touch, and the way that whole portion builds up is extremely well done. The line “my heart is gone, but not completely” will be stuck in your head for days, alongside the guitar solo’s bouncy melody.
“I Really Want You” opens with a sound that’s not completely unlike The New Atlantic‘s “Only You,” with a beautiful acoustic guitar part and an intimate sort of vocal melody accompanying it. The transition between Guerra and Lancaster is seamlessly done. The two provide a great sense of balance when they come together just before the chorus hits and their harmonies soar as the instrumentation gets much louder. The second verse maintains a slightly larger feel, but when the bridge comes, the energy level is all the way up. After the song abruptly retreats back into a final acoustic section, a final chorus hits, full of melodies and harmonies coming in and out. All in all, this is the song on The Weathers that best shows what these guys are capable of from pure talent and songwriting perspectives.
Although “Forever This Way” might attract attention from having Mayday Parade‘s Derek Sanders’ name attached to it, his great performance certainly doesn’t overpower the talents of The Weathers, as Guerra and Lancaster demand even more attention in the vocal department, and the instrumentation makes everything sound huge with tons of small details to catch your ears on each listen. The guitar solo, though a bit low in the mix, is pretty impressive, and the tempo shift before the last chorus is simply superb songwriting technique. As the last minute or so plays out, the song leaves a strong sense of completion, which wraps the EP up wonderfully.
All in all, this EP is another extremely strong showing from these Floridians. Combining a vintage feel with modern songwriting sensibilities and emotion, I honestly can’t think of another band that’s doing quite what these guys are right now. The dual lead vocalists provide wonderful contrast from one another, and the harmonies present throughout are flawless. Intricately simple instrumentation shows off a great deal of musicianship and, more than that, it indicates the amount of care and craftsmanship that went into the creation of these songs. The production allows for every element to shine, and every element shines brightly, from the lyrics to the melodies to the manner in which the songs all flow perfectly to balance intimate and sweeping dynamics. It’s an incredibly complete package for a mere five songs, and the way it’s able to complement The New Atlantic is nice as well. If you like great voices, impactful songwriting, and a more vintage take on rock, you can’t afford to miss out on this EP. And, even if you think you don’t like those things, I’m pretty sure The Weathers is more than capable of converting you.