Springsteen would be proud.
This isn’t the same Hostage Calm that brought the circle pits with their debut album Lens. This isn’t even the same Hostage Calm that did a 180 and churned out a classic self titled album that was a splendid cross between The Smiths and The Clash. Please Remain Calm has such a strong Americana vibe that it makes you think that Bruce Springsteen worked on the album. This is actually the kind of record The Boss would have written if bands like Iggy & The Stooges and The Beach Boys were in his playlist while writing Greetings From Asbury Park.
Please Remain Calm is a superb piece of art that would certainly attract attention from fans of acts such as The Gaslight Anthem and Bob Dylan. J Robbins (The Promise Ring, Against Me!, The Dismemberment Plan) is the perfect choice as a producer for the Connecticut band’s powerpop/punk rock fusion. Please Remain Calm is a 10 track concept album with issues such as love, marriage and death centered around a nation in the midst of a war.
The upbeat tune “May Love Prevail” explodes with mesmerizing xylophones and melodies that won’t leave you skull for days. The band eloquently tip their hat at melodic hardcore act Crime In Stereo during the track “Impossible!” (Can’t you feel the unease? From these “Troubled States” to the Middle East). The re-recorded version of “The M Word” is just as splendid with its Beatles-esque atmosphere. Lyrically, the song focuses on a woman whose love for a soldier seems to be withering by the minute. The acapella number “Patriot” reads like a letter to a fallen soldier with heartfelt lines like “Oh say can’t you see/ that they’ve taken you from me”. Marvelous barbershop quartet melodies easily make this track a hot contender for song of the year. Fans of Hostage Calm’s self-titled album will find themselves joyfully devouring Please Remain Calm.