The Gospel Youth has wavered in and out since their previous release in 2017, so when there was talk of an EP, audience members weren’t sure what to expect since the band hand been so quiet for so long. Knowing that, let’s take a look into the record and see if it was worth the wait. When diving into the EP, it is evident that the foundation for each track is the traditional “The Gospel Youth” approach; however, as one makes their way throughout the album, it becomes noticeable that the band is starting to throw in dashes of musical nuances that are more characteristic of the hardcore/alternative genre compared to the pop/alternative genre in which they strongly presided in up until this point. This shift could go one of two ways for the band: people will either love their new approach to their sound and jump onto and run with it, or people will wish that the previous sound remained, and they will be off-put by the more aggressive sound. Other than those small nuances, the record is strictly pronounced in “The Gospel Youth” fashion: the lyrics are catchy, the instrumentals aren’t overly extravagant, and the band produced some solid tunes. Overall, I would give this EP 3.5 out of 5 stars. I am giving this album such a score because the music that falls on the inside is very solid; however, the music isn’t overly innovative, so it may be hard to grasp the audience’s attention at first.
“Talk” and “Afloat”
With this short EP, The Gospel Youth began to advance and change their sound in a way that is quite intriguing because it mixes an edgier side in with their characteristic sound, which grabs the listener’s attention from the jump. Even with that in mind, there are still going to be tracks that take the forefront, and these two tracks do just that. These two selections drive the new point of view for this band, which gives the audience members the best sense of the EP as a whole. All of the selections on this EP are good, but I would definitely start here.
When first glancing at the album artwork, it is apparent that it screams the “The Gospel Youth” brand, which will bring old fans in almost immediately. The one thing that connects this artwork back to their previous works is the use of an umbrella, this time it being filled with flowers with some of the edges charred. Connecting this to the music that falls on the inside, it is apparent that the two work well together. Throughout the record, the band focuses on topics of hardships and other topics that may make people feel less than great. This connects to the image, for those topics may make someone feel as if they are starting to deteriorate, but they have to act okay and keep going, and that’s exactly what the cover artwork is depicting. Overall, I would say that this cover artwork enhances the experience of this EP, for it gives the audience the full-body experience that is this record, which helps them to truly grasp the full intent of the work.
*”Thoughtless” was released on August 2nd, 2019 through Portal Recordings.