On their debut EP “Hopeless Sons”, Gold Coast hardcore quintet Promises deliver songs that are a personal, meaningful, and melodic form of hardcore in the vein of Killing The Dream, Defeater, and Ruiner, without sounding like yet another carbon copy.
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Smorgasboader #3
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Five tracks of raw and angry Queensland hardcore, featuring ex-members of Gold Coast metalcore boys Vices For Virtues and the drumming talents of Nic Lalot of southsiders Driven Fear. The combo guarantees you a heartfelt 15 minutes or so of detuned guitars, rock solid drumming, great gang vocals and frontman Zaca’s trademark throat-tearing. ‘Regardless’ is a standout track, kicking off with Sick Of It All-like bassline and a great New York style two-step midsection. If you like your music heavy, this is perfect for a pre-surf hype-up in the car. Give it a spin. All gold. Rating: 4/5

Dying Scene
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Often, when one door closes someone forgets to lock the bathroom window. Climbing out of the window that now defunct Gold Coast outfit, Vices For Virtue, left open are Promises. Comprising the bulk of Vices for Virtues, the five piece formed in the beginning of 2010 and within three months had written and recorded a debut EP, Hopeless Sons, and signed to one of Australia’s best independent labels, Pee Records. In March 2010, the band took themselves to Capulet Studios with the freshly written songs in tow to record Hopeless Sons. All recording, mixing and mastering was done by Mitta Norath (One Vital Word, Raise The Alarm). Whilst the EP comes with five tracks and clocks in at just under 15 minutes, opener No Story Left Untold is a short taster. Kicking off with distorted guitar, the song moves into a repeated gang vocal of ‘we know more than you’d have us believe’, before vocalist Zaca, concludes the song with the same line. Flint Soles is the other track on the release that seems almost out of place because of its brevity. Thirty seconds of thrashing guitars with the Jean-Paul Satre quote, ‘hell is other people’, laid over the top. While their take on modern hardcore isn’t breaking boundaries, the band’s approach of writing meaningful and passionate lyrics separates them from the many bands who write hardcore songs in a need to disperse anger and misfortune. Meaning isn’t lost in a sea of indistinguishable vocals, rather the melody in the Zaca’s voice, the odd snap into gang vocals along with a frenzy of guitar work between Casey and Joe makes Promises deliver something more than typical play-by-numbers hardcore. This is no more evident than in the song Notes. Closer, Forecast, begins slower than any other track but it also stands as the strongest song of the album along with the longest, coming in at just under six minutes. Extensive guitar and drum tempo shifts ensures there’s never a sense of drag, rather it could be a collective of a few songs, cleverly melded into one. Whilst being old hats in the game, the new band has delivered an EP which is a promising index of what will be capable in their future. Pun intended. As this band grows as a unit, expect stronger examples of modern hardcore that doesn’t prescribe to a scene, but a belief. Rating: 4/5

Razorcake #58 [USA]
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Decent “old school” hardcore with that kinda updated West Coast sound. Y’know, that sorta serious GoIt Alone/Another Breath type aesthetic – black and white cityscape artwork, atypically (for the genre) personal lyrics. This stuff doesn’t really hold my attention for very long anymore, but I imagine there are a ton of kids who are down with the Panic/Rivalry etc. scene who would be wild about these these dudes. Well-executed, but just not a whole lot brought to the table that’s gonna have me going back for more. Review by: Dave Williams

PEE #46
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
New Queensland outfit Promises has unleashed a great five-track debut EP with “Hopeless Sons”. Treading a similar path to Modern Life Is War, Have Heart and Aussie outfits like Break Even and Miles Away, there’s plenty to like here. Opening track “No Story Left Untold” is a great introduction to Promises, which builds slowly and ends with some awesome gang vocals, before bursting into the breakneck “Notes”, which is my pick here. “Regardless” is a solid song that slows things down slightly before the 18-second breakdown of “Flint Soles” melds into the rocking closing “Forecast”. It’s over pretty quickly but it’s a consistent debut from Promises. Decent artwork and a good recording rounds out an impressive debut from these guys.
Rating: 91 – Review By: No Show

BLUNT Issue #92
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
There’s something about Hopeless Sons – the debut release from Gold Coast crew Promises – that makes it a more enticing listen than so many other offerings this already stale genre (modern hardcore, mate) has spewed out recently. Featuring the throaty vocal skills of Zaca (who also fronts Canberra metalcore titans Dead Kings), these five tracks have a dark, almost ominous vibe to them that allows the band to maintain a heavy sound without venturing into metal territory. Obvious comparisons will be drawn to existing Melbourne powerhouse Carpathian, but any similarities should be applauded rather than criticised. At only 15 minutes in length, it’s hard to pick a favourite, so fingers crossed a full-length will see the light of day in the not too distant future. Rating: 3.5/5 – Review by: Nicholas Jacobson

World’s Appreciated Kitsch [Greece]
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
‘Hell is other people’ – Jean Paul Sartre (1905-1980) Woah! Promises is a hardcore band based in Gold Coast, Australia and was formed around 5 months ago, in early 2010! Despite this fact, they managed to release an awesome EP including 5 songs of furious and heavy yet emotional modern hardcore. Taking the best elements of Carpathian and Ruiner and drawing influences from Killing The Dream, Have Heart, Defeater and the likes, they create a unique sound. Their songs are heartfelt enough to create feelings to the listeners, and that’s a very strong point that distinguishes Promises from the chugga-chugga, macho / tough guy hardcore generation that is, unfortunately, still prominent in today’s hardcore scene, even though it exists in lesser amounts than it did a few years ago. Moreover, Promises’ lyrics are very nice and thorough, therefore the band has definitely something to say. I really dig the whole aesthetic of the cover and the booklet, mostly based in photographs, depicting landscapes and the city by night. The cover consists of 5 panoramic photos that Danai would kill to have them in original format, hehe! All in all, an awesome release. I’ll be patiently waiting for Promises’ first full length. Thanks to Pee Records for being stubborn enough to continue putting out quality releases. ‘We are your empty, hopeless sons. Put your faith in us. We are your empty hopeless daughters. Put your faith in us. We’re empty and it’s hopeless’

PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Before I can even listen to the music on this one, I get an idea of what’s coming as I glance over the bio featuring band photo of a bunch of dudes you probably don’t wanna meet in a dark alley, dude in the middle has his fist clenched as if to say “write good words about us mate or else…” The music, a similar picture, tough hardcore with a nice balance of flat out and melody. 5 tracks on offer from this debut EP, 15 minutes of tunes all up. It’s not the kinda hardcore that you wanna show off your karate moves to in the pit, it’s the type that you wanna see the dust flying around in a mini tornado as everyone does their little burnouts in the pit. In other words, it’s the good kinda stuff, musically and lyrically. ‘Regardless’ is a highlight track, features a little bit of everything in it’s three and a half minutes, while ‘Flint Soles’ is here and gone within 19 seconds, barely enough time to even throw a fist in the air. If you like a little anthemic / melodic hardcore that doesn’t suck, then look these fellahs up. Gold Coast bands tend to be notoriously lazy, hopefully these guys are an exception to that and can take their stuff on the road for all to hear. Check them out.

Lights Go Out Zine #8 [UK]
PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Flat out melodic hardcore from down under. Five tracks that blast right into your face with their fast riffs and heavy words. This is packed with power and very much for fans of Ruiner and more of those Bridge Nine Records bands. Pete from Pee Records really does find the best bands from Australia and Promises are yet another blinding example of what’s going on in that part of the world. Epic melodic hardcore, nothing overly different, standard vocals, the expected gang vocals, but well worth listening too, this is a formula I for one like! I’d love to check this band out live, so get over to these shores, Promises are a band that can do big things on the hardcore scene! Review by: Mr. T

PROMISES – Hopeless Sons
Promises only formed back in January and already have their debut EP, ‘Hopeless Sons’, coming out on Pee Records, June 11. Pee Records have a list of bands on their label who do not waste time and Promises are the latest to be added to their family. Now people want to know, why are Promises special? For those who live on the Gold Coast, they can without difficulty remember a band by the name of Vices For Virtues. Well from their demise comes Promises. Drawing from influences from the likes of Defeater, Killing The Dream and The Hope Conspiracy. Promises deliver music with passion and determination that make Kobe Bryant look mediocre. ‘Hopeless Sons’ opens up with two tracks titled ‘No Story Left Untold’ and ‘Notes’. Just after listening to 5 minutes of music the listener has changed from a curious listener, to a fan for life. Vocalist Zaca sounds very similar to Martin from Carpathian, but delivers his vocals with more ferociousness. The short lived EP finishes just as strong as it started. ‘Forecast’ contains some of the most honest lyrics Australian hardcore has been privileged to hear. After only being a band for a few months and already being able to deliver music to the standard as ‘Hopeless Sons’ contains, is a sign that Promises are a band to watch. For those that love fast guitars accompanied by some pounding bass, damaging drums and passionate vocals, this is a band to check out. One thing is for certain, Promises will not leave the world as they found it. Recommended Song ‘Forecast’ – Rating: 9/10

11 June 2010

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CAT #: PCD035
Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by:
Mitta Norath @ Capulet Studios
Artwork by: Samuel Nolan & Zack

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