Monday, 8 April 2019

Album Review: To The Robot Graveyard by We Found A Map

We Found A Map are a skate punk band from Southern Californian featuring long time friends Grant (guitar & vocals), James (bass & vocals) and Bahrum (drums). I stumbled upon them via Bandcamp, instantly attracted to the awesome artwork for their new EP To The Robot Graveyard. Naturally I clicked play to see if there was substance to go along with the beauty. He's what I found.

To The Robot Graveyard begins with the song Captain Lily. The track starts with some atmospheric music that sounds like a movie score. This makes sense when you find out that We Found A Map have a bit of a science fiction theme to their music. After this introduction we are greeted with a mid tempo skate punk track which I think is about the heroine from the popular computer game Runescape. Once the song really kicks in, it's filled with energy and the way in which the vocals are delivered has you wanting to sing along with the band. With a pounding drum beat and plenty of harmonies, this is exactly what I enjoy from a skate punk song. The urge to want to sing along continues on the next song, Zelda Is A Girl. Musically it's a little softer, focusing more on melody than exploding with energy. This song sees We Found A Map take on the role of Link from the Legend Of Zelda franchise and explore his thoughts about Zelda and the tumultuous relationship they have. The harmonies towards the end of the track really have me thinking of So Cal skate punk legends No Use For A Name.

The third song on To The Robot Graveyard is named Stoic. The track starts with a short building section where all the instruments get to shine, along with some added electronic music that adds to the atmosphere of the opening. When the vocals come in there is a feeling of seriousness and one of We Found A Map aren't playing around here. Stoic is about how selfish and destructive the human race are and how it doesn't seem to affect people like it should. The song finishes with a long instrumental that is again like a movie score. This leads into the penultimate song All Of Them… Witches! This is a sombre feeling song that takes some time to really hit its heights. The build is slow and subtle but when it hits it is certainly worth the wait. The track is about wanting someone to change their wicked ways but not having any faith that it will happen. The final song on the EP is Royal Blue. The intro of the song grabbed me in a big way, starting with more of that movie score style instrumental before the band come in with more of a pop punk feel. When the vocals eventually come in you are fully invested in the song. Royal Blue looks at the pressure team sports puts on you and how you can be forced into doing something you don't love just because you happen to be good at it. I really like this as a song topic, it's pretty unique and really well done. This was a great way to finish the EP.

To The Robot Graveyard is a little different to a lot of skate punk that I'd usually listen to but I really enjoyed it. The differences give it a fresh feeling as well as a uniqueness. I'm really impressed with We Found A Map's ability as lyricists – some of the lyrics are captivating. If you love skate punk but want to try something a little different then this is one for you.

Stream and download To The Robot Graveyard here:

Like We Found A Map here:

This review was written by Colin Clark.

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