Yet another hardcore/emocore band, but one in which the yin and yang of hard and light, metal and emo are blended equally well, a la Avenged Sevenfold and The Black Maria. Everything is arranged perfectly on The Reason’s opening track, “Reclaiming the Throne”. The odd tempos and staggered drum beat of “The Joke & The Gentleman” allows for a very emotive, almost acoustic-rock styled track to blossom into an incredibly fast and melodic track. What is by far one of the most impressive facets of The Reason is the interplay of the three vocalists on the track (Adam, James, and Erik). While the usual Cookie Monster / “emo” dichotomy is fed, it is not to the self-parody-like levels of a band like Maroon. “The Joke & The Gentleman” is constructed in a way that it borders on a children’s song. As the track spins around, The Reason is talented enough to create a hook that anyone that is listening to the CD will remember, just like “Ring Around The Rosie” (which is the song that mirrors “The Joke & The Gentleman” the most. The Reason has left all the drek that bands like Simple Plan have dropped on Canada and taken the emotion of a “Perfect” along with the sizzling guitar riffs of another Canadian export, Sum 41.
What is most impressive about The Reason is how unabashedly grounded in pop they can be and yet wow me with the sizzling guitar lines and perfectly-placed drum beats on every track during “Ravenna”. “150” shows that The Reason will not simply throw the weakest tracks towards the back of the disc; rather, the dual-harmonies heard on this track are some of the finest to be heard in this genre. The follow-up track to “150”, “My Prescription” should be played alongside Brand New, Taking Back Sunday, and Hidden in Plain View. Even though The Reason has only been around for a few years (and only have previously an EP to their credit) they have shown with “Ravenna” that they are definitely ready for primetime. Keep checking major radio and TV for The Reason, as they will break it wide open here in 2005 – and if they don’t get where they deserve to be soon, given enough support they will win support from a myriad of different fans.
Top Tracks: 150, Subways in Pittsburgh
The Reason – Ravenna / 2004 Smallman Records / 10 Tracks / http://www.thereason.ca / http://www.smallmanrecords.com / Reviewed 02 February 2005