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Album Review: A Hot Take On Heartbreak by Columbus

Australian three-piece Columbus release their second album, A Hot Take On Heartbreak, on 25th May via UNFD. Bands evolve from album to album as the lives of its members, and their music tastes, continue to change. That’s particularly true in the case of Columbus, whose debut album was entitled Spring Forever, but its follow-up A Hot Take on Heartbreak has seen the Brisbane trio opting for a dramatic change of season.

“On Spring Forever we went into the studio and did exactly what we wanted,” recalls Columbus’ singer/guitarist Alex Moses of their debut. “But after touring that record and it coming time to do a new one, we realised that the music we wanted to play was distinctly different. We didn’t want to be a pop punk band anymore. We didn’t even want to be a punk band anymore. We wanted people to know us as a rock band.”

So where to Columbus sit now? To say they’ve moved away from pop punk completely would be hyperbole, to say they were a conventional alt rock band would do them a disservice, rather it’s more an early (first two albums) Weezer sound with more edge.

It’s a change that has done the band the world of good. Rather than being one of the crowd they now have sound that’s more distinct. While it is an identifying sound it isn’t one that’s going to change the world. A Hot Take On Heartbreak is a decent album, one that threatens to be excellent but struggles to get out of third gear.

Of the ten tracks, five have real gusto and hint at real potential behind the band while the remainder falls into the middle of the road mud. Lead single ‘Don’t Know How To Act’ gets things off to an excellent start with ‘Feeling Low’ having a relatable sentiment and infectious hook. There’s the ridiculously immediate and catchy ‘Woke Up With A Heart Attack’ which begs you to sing-along and fall in love with before ‘Piece Of Shit’ opens up the harder edge of Columbus with some excellent crunchy guitars. Closer ‘Feel This Way’ is a fragile heartbreaker but retains the immediacy of the before mentioned tracks.

Unfortunately, the rest of the album doesn’t follow suit and your left with a bit of mixed bag. Decent and worth a listen nonetheless.

AD Rating 6/10

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