No Franco Deliver Thrillingly Frenzied Post-Hardcore On Crushing Debut EP

The post-hardcore group’s No Franco’s debut, self-titled EP feels, quite simply, thrilling. The songs burst with cacophonous energy that feels like a storm ready to whisk listeners right into its midst. All of the hits come down hard, from the crushing guitar riffing to the blasts of the drums and the heavy trod of the weighty bass lines. Each of these elements — and in turn, listeners — feel kicked along by a consistently strong, forward-rushing melody. The band have turned these rushes forward into an immersive and really pretty exciting experience. The songs feel like a party — a heavy, loud, sometimes chaotic party to be sure, but they’re a party nonetheless.

The music on this short EP proves richly dynamic. For example, track two — called “Always Rains” — sports a bit more of a biting razor edge to the riffing, and scattered among the heavy moments, it also features moments of more soulfully subdued vocals, echoing gang vocals in the background, and incredibly crunchy, engaging heavy bass groove, all of which snakes along amidst the galloping riffing. Meanwhile, the closing track opens somberly, and the riffing all of a sudden feels overcast with heavy feedback-laden tones, and the swings extend on.

The vocals on this release really amp up the thrill — right from the get-go, the vocalist sounds loud and frenzied. In place of a perhaps more traditionally shredding hardcore roar, his vocals feel like they’re jumping all over the place right in line with the blasts of guitar riffing. When the time is right, he easily evolves into more subdued moments — and then he and the band kick their performances right back up a few notches in order to drive in the impact.

The band have described No Franco as “honest assessment of cultural norms and emotional torment,” and that honesty shines through in the EP’s freeing, swirling rush.

5/5 Stars

Check out a music video for “Saturdays” below.

Dive into the full EP below via Spotify!