March 10, 2016

Maple Hill – Headspace

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New York rockers Maple Hill have released their debut LP, Headspace.

Headspace has a lot working for it. It’s fun, fast-paced, and re-playable. There’s not a track to skip, but, only a few standouts. The musicianship is tight, yet sporadic. “Space To Grow” is a bit of a roller coaster. The guitar solo is superb, but dragged down by a breakdown that doesn’t know where it wants to go. This is the case for several tracks throughout Headspace. The lyrics work well and inspire vivid storytelling in a handful of tracks. “Streetlights” intro is as catchy as ballads come. It smoothly transition into anthem-status and has a strong payoff for a 5-plus minute length.

Maple Hill’s Headspace has a familiarity about it. The occasionally inspired lead guitar does help Maple Hill stand out, but, not enough to distinguish them in the sea of modern pop-punk acts. The album shares a lot of similarities with early All Time Low and adds twists here and there . The inclusion of the gang vocals seem misplaced and clash with the natural upbeat tone throughout the album. There are moments of brilliance scattered throughout the album where Maple Hill shows flashes of locking in a particular sound, but those moments come and go. They have a bright future ahead of them once they find their sound.

Rating: 5/10

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