After a few years of minimal activity, Energy is back. They completed a UK tour as a support act for Creeper earlier this year, and are now preparing to embark on their first headlining UK tour ever. To coincide with the tour, Energy are releasing their EP Under the Mask on July 21st, 2017.
Featuring vocalist Tank’s signature haunting vocal over a dark bed of music, “The Witching Hour” kicks off the EP. The chugging rhythm guitar and squealing lead combine forces to drive the song forward over a pounding drum arrangement.
The title track, “Under the Mask”, begins with a slow buildup in the intro. Energy finds a way to keep song after song dark, but not let it get old. The dual-guitar leads add a nice touch to the song.
“A Pray for Rain” seems uncharacteristically upbeat for Energy, as far as the music goes. Lyrically, the song maintains Energy’s dark atmosphere. While Tank’s voice suits most of Energy’s songs very well, I feel that this song would lend itself more to a pop punk style vocal sound.
Another poppy song, “I Killed Your Boyfriend” sounds very stereotypical, and almost like a Green Day or Alkaline Trio song from a musical standpoint. This might be because it’s the only song on the EP not written by Tank himself, but rather by Mike Rendini, and is re-recorded from Energy’s first release, Children of the Night.
Closing out the EP is the track “Leave Me Alone”. Starting off with a haunting acoustic intro vaguely reminiscent of 3 Doors Down, the song quickly builds into a more driving horror-punk song that we’ve come to expect from Energy. With a few production changes in tone and vibe, I could almost hear Bayside playing this song, it’s just that good.
Overall, Under the Mask is a decent EP. I must say I prefer Apparition Sound but we can’t expect an artist to re-release the same music over and over, and I do look forward to hearing more new music from Energy. My one gripe with the new EP, as a whole, is that the vocal level seems to be a bit high throughout the entire release.