The first striking thing about Make Haste’s new EP is the portrait on the cover. It’s too bad for Joseph Bloore that re-taking unflattering photos was more challenging in 1850! The look of angry disgust on his face works comically well with the title – Unrest – which also reflects the restless heart of this set of six songs.
Musically, though, this is classic synth pop with a heavy side. Distorted and filtered vocals, magical beats, textures everywhere. Crackling noises, ornamental bleeps, grand choruses.
A high point is “Get Back Home”, the story of a break up told with two different and conflicting versions of the story. She thinks he was resentful, making up stories. He thinks she is living in a fantasy and was unfaithful. It all adds up to a dramatic back-and-forth as both parties realize they need to focus on getting back to a comfortable state, becoming themselves again apart.
There’s some great vocal collaboration all throughout the EP, outsourcing vocals from singers like Zoe Sky Jordan and Lesley Davies, though the constant filtered presence of Make Haste/TK Dallman is powerful and emotional enough to pull off the unhappy subject matter of the lyrics. And unhappy it is: realizing you should have left a relationship a long time ago, being caught in a web of your own lies, and being resentful of someone’s advantage are all situations explored.
It’s exciting to see a significant release from the Toronto-based artist – do you remember when he played our Crosswires show last summer? – and at its core, Unrest achieves the same thing that the live show does: an impressive amount of dancing.
Top Tracks: “Get Back Home”, “Stakes”
Rating: Strong Hoot (Good)