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Review:: Matt Pryor/James Dewees Split

Matt Pryor’s work as a part of The Get Up Kids has made his a pioneer within our music world. His honest, brutally passionate lyrics have always held a standard that others can only hope to achieve. Though The Get Up Kids may be where his primary recognition comes from, his productions stemming from The New Amsterdams and the Terrible Twos (his kid’s music group) have also made quite the impression.

Later this year, Pryor will be releasing his newest solo record, Wrist Slitter – his third album on his own. But, being the marathoner that he is, he teamed up with James Dewees, of Reggie and the Full Effect and My Chemical Romance fame (and, you know, The Get Up Kids as well), to release a short split EP beforehand.

The first of his three tracks, “I Can Be So Cold,” is a full-band effort reminiscent of what we’ve grown to love about Pryor’s music. His definitive voice is just as it has always been, coupled kindly with trademark lyricism, slammed piano keys, and harsh guitars.
“Failing You” is a sprinted pop-punk gem. Racing by in under two minutes, it’s a brief anthem for dealing with letting someone down and trying to get beyond it. Pryor screeches “I’m trying, dying, I’m failing you every time. Your patience is just wasted … I just go on and on for hours until everything around me disappears,” screaming over not being able to “control the monster when it starts.”

Closer “Peculiar” begins gently, sounding like a gradually-building music-box lullaby. A strange fading swirl of electronic static ebbs and flows throughout the background, drawing flashbacks to old JamisonParker tracks. Pryor’s looped vocals “My whole life, regretting, the time is resetting, I’ll always remember this moment forever” repeat themselves as the distorting chaos grows. The song ends, leaving an echo of “forever” ringing in the listeners’ ears. It is, in the simplest of terms, haunting and gorgeous.

Rating short EP’s like this is always tricky for me. On one hand, I want to spitefully give it a “0” because I’m petty and bitter that it is only three songs. Then again, on the other end of the spectrum, I want to give it a “6” because it’s really damn good. So, we’ll average that out to a “3.” Yay, math! (Don’t worry, there won’t be any more of that noise. We’ll focus on music.)

Release Date: September 30th, 2013
Rating: 3/5
Runtime: 7:15

1. “I Can Be So Cold”
2. “Failing You”
3. “Peculiar”

Written By: Eric Riley
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