REVIEW: The Way Away – ‘Something I Never Wanted’ EP

the way away EP.jpgThe Way Away kick off their new EP, Something I Never Wanted, the way any good pop-punk band should: with high energy, amazing guitars, and fast-paced vocals. “Second Chances” is the type of song that makes you want to mosh in your bedroom, pretending that you, too, are a rockstar. Matt Kabes vocals are perfection, delivering lyrics that hint at the title of the EP, talking about regrets, remorse, and not living up to expectations (essentially summing up your twenties). There are plenty of group vocals and power, which will keep listeners in the mix. However, it’s the Simple Plan-esque bridge that brings it home, when the instrumentals quiet down for just a breath, and the vocals get a moment to shine, before the song truly explodes. The track is a definite high note, and sets the standards for the rest of the EP quite high.

Almost like the band chose to forego a fade out, the EP quickly moves into “Alive,” which is everything the thirteen year old emo inside of me dreams about. Pop-punk isn’t dead? Neither is emo! With dark lyrics, but an overall hopeful tone, the track is a love song, and hints at a bit at being a little too dependent on someone for your happiness, but there’s something so damned catchy about it, it’s irresistible. “I spent years wishing I could be someone else, now all I want is to be by your side,” Kabes belts out…and you’ll find yourself belting along too. Guaranteed. In a similar breath, “Echoes” will transport listeners back to 2003 (perhaps even 2005). The song shows a bit of an edgier side of The Way Away, and I have to say, it’s a good look for them. Moody, bitter, and strong, “Echoes” is, hands down, a standout track on Something I Never Wanted. Perfect for AFI (and possibly Alkaline Trio) fans, the rhythm (courtesy of Jake Engler on bass and Wyatt Engl on drums) is fantasic. Heavy guitars really round it out, especially with moments of group vocals slipped in.

“Alone” is an ideal live-show tune. I can imagine lots of jumping, lots of lyric-shouting, and plenty of energy. Despite the emotional lyrics, there’s a raw quality to the track that seems to ignite as it carries along. However, it’s the fast-paced, summer anthem, and closer, “Six Feet Over,” that will leave listeners’ jaws slack. With a wonderfully catchy chorus, and breath-taking instrumental moments (check out Jeff Engler’s guitar solo!), The Way Away will mesmerize anyone within earshot. This is the song that will make you want, no, need, to see the band live.

Something I Never Wanted drops tonight. Pick up your copy at: https://thewayaway.bandcamp.com

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