If you knew anything about Gold Route‘s debut EP, I’m Just Killing Time, you’ll find that much of it was more of the same with the collection’s shining moment coming through on “Mindless,” but two years have passed and we have a new Gold Route full-length titled Prosper, so what do we get exactly? On Prosper, Gold Route take a heavy pop-punk sound with catchy breakdowns, memorable yet raspy vocals from Sean Hazen, and do some insane things with that. Unlike the band’s EP, Prosper has a lot of pop influence without sounding too soft or All Time Low-like in order to keep their iconic rough sound. Much of the album’s tracks methodically layer high-pitched guitar tones over one another, which is seen a lot in pop-punk but rarely this well.
Opening with the first two singles given – “Ropes” and “Living Now” – Gold Route show off their obvious pop influence with this record. The first half of the album passes quickly, with the tracks timing in at no longer than 3:17, some even as short as 2:10. Some may say that could be a good thing, though, as bands tend to overdue chorus repeats on some occasions. One of the more noticeable songs within the ten-track collection is “Never Wanted,” which is more full-feeling than some others. My favorite track slides in at number eight – the longest song on the record, “Peak.” Hazen sings about confronting mental illness (“I’ve been thinking of a better day / is it all the same?”), a battle so many go through and resonate with, unfortunately. The track is such an incredible, cathartic release.
To close, the band pick it right back up again with an angsty song titled “Prosper” – the title track. Following is “Happier” making the last two songs some of the most upbeat on the album, as well as two of the best. Pop-punk is so uncommon in upcoming bands, but you’ll want to know Gold Route soon.
Gold Route – Prosper
Release: May 30, 2017 – Independent
Rating: 9/10 – Brad LaPlante
Replay Worthy: “Peak,” “Living Now,” “Happier”
Buy it, Stream it, or Skip it?: Stream it, then buy if you like. Many of these songs were incredible for me, but I could totally see a lot of people cherry-picking a few of these songs since those stood out much more than the rest.