Label: Big Scary Monsters
Having toured relentlessly with the likes of Modern Baseball and The Wonder Years, the acclaim afforded to The Winter Passing’s debut album was earned through hard graft, inventive songwriting and compelling live shows. Hailing from the tiny town of Tipperary in Ireland, to have established themselves within that American alt-emo scene speaks for itself.
Second LP ‘New Ways of Living’ cements the five-piece as one of the most promising to emerge from the scene in recent years, their dualistic approach sets them apart. Fronted by siblings and vocalists Kate and Rob Flynn, their unique dovetailing on tracks such as ‘Melt’ is the key to their appeal. World collide with Rob’s hardcore vocal and guitar stylings meshing enticingly with Kate’s more immediate pop-punk pipes.
That back and forth allows the band more dynamic range than contemporaries in either the emo or pop-punk scene. ‘Crybaby’ is the most extreme example, with a kids choir reprising a chant-along that would sit happily with Taylor Swift or Hayley Williams, before chiming guitar lines welcome Rob back into the lead role. The heartfelt ‘Greetings from Tipperary’ harkens to their Irish roots, the lilting tune paying tribute to the nation’s folk traditions. It’s short but incredibly sweet.
Already occupying a distinct niche in the alternative rock landscape, ‘New Ways of Living’ isn’t exactly The Winter Passing bursting out of their cage, but they do prod at the boundaries of their sound with encouraging results.