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ATP! Album Review: Title Fight - Floral Green

On the outside, "Floral Green" is anything but delicate. Built on foundations of course, melodic punk, it weaves between the realms of post-hardcore and post-rock underneath fracturing layers of frustration and feedback-coated jams. Title Fight haven't so much altered their sound as they have continued to refine it, with the end product emerging sonically richer than "Shed" and more controlled than earlier releases like "The Last Thing You Forget".

Every element of "Floral Green" sounds lush yet harsh, tumultuous yet controlled, calloused yet sensitive. It is the the classic thorn covered rose, and in that sense it seems like Title Fight couldn't have decided upon a more appropriate name for their sophomore full-length.

Opening with 'Numb, But I Still Feel It', the first four tracks are a familiar barrage of shattering riffs and raspy vocals. Ned Russin's voice has altered somewhat, having retained its serrated edge but matured in places to a melodic drawl more in line with Blake Schwarzenbach (Jawbreaker). From track five onwards, the same can be said of the music; the punch is still there, but the pace has eased up, allowing more room for the kind of sprawling instrumentation toyed with on 'Safe In Your Skin' to explore itself, rather than existing as a period of respite to be punctured by 4/4 drum blasts.

Jamie Rhoden takes more of a backseat in terms of vocal involvement this time around, but on tracks like 'Head in the Ceiling Fan' and 'Lefty' that are more slow burning, his subdued voice melts seamlessly into reverb-heavy guitars that have a similar patient arrangement to Explosions In The Sky. During these moments, we are miles away from the hard-hitting immediacies of "Shed", instead opting for a more serene approach to emotional-gutting that echoes Brand New circa "The Devil and God" and often drifts into elements of shoegaze. That isn't to say that Title Fight have done a one-eighty and gone all soft on us - 'Leaf' and 'Secret Society' are serious knuckle bruisers, it's just that now the reasons behind the battle are more evident, making "Floral Green" a touchstone for universal wounds.

With even weight and focus placed on each instrument, "Floral Green" feels like Title Fight's most complete body of work to date. Each aspect has been carefully considered, picked apart and tweaked to perfection, but it still comes out feeling completely organic. It has been fine-tuned, but not forced, and their play on intensity blossoms as much as it burns with absolutely nothing left lacking.


Emma Garland

"Floral Green" is released on September 18th through SideOneDummy Records.

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