Radically changing one’s tone and genre, that takes balls – especially when a fanbase has a sense of incredible patriotism over one form of sound. Sudden transitions can turn things violent, as Hundredth, a South Carolina post-hardcore four-piece, had discovered when they debuted their single ‘Hole’ on the 31st May.
Around about the same time of their debut of ‘Hole’, frontman, Chadwick Johnson, told CLRVYNT that “I think it just came to a boil when our original guitar player came back in the band and we were like, “Dude, this is fucking lame. I don’t want to write this kind of music anymore.” I’ve been unhappy for years; I’ve just swallowed it because it’s a paycheck, y’know?”
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‘Rare’, the post-hardcore groups third and latest LP, is no unique landmark event for the band. Carrying strong resemblances to the alt-rock group, Balance and Composure, one could assume that Hundredth are just going with the same flow that everyone else appears to be undertaking. Alas though, post-hardcore was always meant to hit a dead end, and repetition can only work so many times.
Despites its peerless tones, ‘Rare’ is still home to numerous intensifying songs. Take ‘Disarray’ for example, where the band blends in their core, hard hitting root rhythms with the cool, silkiness of Johnsons near-whispered vocals to create the faultless ‘in the middle’ track of the entire album. Or even ‘Shy Vein’, a song which sees the four-piece begin the introduction of ambient synths into their work, albeit rather minimal. ‘Departure’ near to the LP’s closing is a memorable one, thanks to its simplified guitar lead (not something that Hundredth are especially known for) used throughout the songs few choruses, adding an almighty finishing touch to a self-monumental game changer.
Regardless of whether ‘Rare’ is appealing, ovation is more than well deserved. After all, the transition from a core genre to the juxtaposition of shoegaze or alt-rock is no easy feat. More so when the bands’ entire catalogue is overridden by blandness and recurrences, now however, it would appear obvious that those elements were caused by a lack of enthusiasm for their previous ventures.
This change that the members of Hundredth have all undertaken, is no doubt for the best. Not just for their personal wellbeing, but for preserving their projects’ self-dignity before it hits rock bottom and vanishes into the past.
‘Rare’ is available now via Hopeless Records. The full track-listing for the album is as follows…
3. White Squall
9. Shy Vein