Band: Divided by Friday
Album: Prove It (Ep)
Label: Hopeless Records
Release Date: August 29th 2011
Reviewer: Brandon Jones
Buy Here: iTunes or Amazon (Digital) or Hopeless Records (CD)
1. Prove It
2. Growing Up
3. The Dark Passenger
4. Lost in Limbo
5. Face to Face
Divided by Friday are a 4-piece pop-punk/alt-rock band from Greensboro, North Carolina. They’ve been playing together since they were just teens in high school and we here at IVM have been covering them pretty much since the beginning. Josh Murphy (Managing Editor and longtime supporter) pretty much brought my attention to them back in 2008 and I have kept my eye on them ever since. We have done several reviews over the years, some were nice, and some, borderline. I have done my best to support these young guys even when they were just a high school band with demo worthy material. I saw the potential (as did Josh) and knew that they’d be on to bigger, better things (and deals) someday. “Prove It” does just that, PROVES that Divided by Friday are here to stay and here to make a significant impact with their time in the music scene.
The ep starts out with the strong opener (and also title track) “Prove It” with it’s quick pace and catchy rhythms. “this is real and this is life and its taken quite a bit of time and I’m not moving, I am here to prove it, I am here to prove it..”
“Growing Up” is the next track and it’s also another great one. A an ode to “growing up” and proving yourself. “and I’m not the only one, I’m gonna give it my all….I am never going to be ashamed of who I am…” I swear I hear Joel Piper (Ex-Confide/Dismissed/Oliviatheband) singing back ups but I could be wrong.
“The Dark Passenger” is a little edgier guitar wise with an almost “duel” guitar like attack throughout the song adding a nice ambiance and compliment to Jose’s voice.
“Lost in Limbo”is also another fast pace song, with some edgy guitars, slight guitar solo like material, and Jose’s upfront vocal delivery. I am hearing a definite Patrick Stump vocal influence. In fact, Fall Out Boy would be the closest comparison I’d give Divided by Friday which is a great thing in how I look at it because FOB did put out some fun material during their time together.
“Face to Face” slows things down a bit and borders on the ballad-like territory some bands dread to go in. I actually really enjoy it. It’s good to see bands not afraid to try different things and explore all sides of their creative spirit. “praying for the day when you would notice me and now I am slowly noticing that while you were my world you were the one and now my searching days are done…you were the one that got away…” It’s a ballad sung towards a lost love and it has some beautiful backing vocals by a female vocalist that I don’t know by name, sorry. The song is great and adds a soft heart warming touch to the ep.
The ep ends with the track “Closer” which is lead by charged up guitars and the energetic vocals of frontman Jose Villanueva. I almost hear an Anberlin crossed with Fall Out Boy type explosion happening here within song. It’s that “edge” or whatever you call it, that keeps me interested and holds my attention. “giving up is not an option”
I see influences by a number of bands throughout this album although Divided by Friday certainly doesn’t cop any band’s style outright nor steals anyone’s thunder if you know what I mean. I definitely hear traces of Patrick Stump of Fall Out Boy throughout the ep and in Jose’s vocal delivery, even a bit of The Cab (old), and Panic at the Disco as well. The guitars remind me of Anberlin and Hawthorne Heights for some reason, although it’s all their own. I am just trying to draw a visual picture for those of you unfamiliar with this band’s work and to give you a good idea of what this album might sound like. The production is crisp and clear which is of course to be expected from anything Hopeless Records puts out (quality recordings). I was actually hoping Divided by Friday would put out a full length after the amount of eps they’ve done over the years. In fact I don’t believe the band has ever done a full length, at least not one that we have reviewed here at IVM. I think it’s time for Hopeless to put this band in a fancy pants studio with a knowledgeable producer and pump out a 12 track album full a catchy music, hopefully latching on to the sound they have discovered with this ep “Prove It”. There are 6 songs on this ep and every one is about 3 minutes long or over. Pretty much built for radio. This not overdone prog-rock filled with endless hours of guitar noodling and lyrics about flying spaceships and monsters in the dark. This is straight up music you’d find on any radio station if the band was serviced in that manner. It’s catchy, addictive, filled with incredible amounts of melody, as well as energy in the music makers behind Divided by Friday. This is a band not afraid to “Prove It” to the world and the music scene around them that they are more than just a young band playing pop-punk/alt-rock with songs about love and loss. They are coming to grips with their identity as a band and as evidenced on this ep, you can see the band has become quite comfortable in this sound that they have made all their own. While I enjoy all styles of music by all sorts of bands and never limit myself to just trends or what “critics” will tell me to enjoy, I have become quite acquainted with my collection of poppy songs you’d probably find on the radio (although many of the bands probably didn’t get that chance). Whether Divided by Friday gets spun will only be proven in the future but I believe that future is a bright one and considering their age, there is much time left to be had. Check out “Prove It” if you are looking for the perfect kick back music to end your long hot summer with. Score 8/10because it’s an ep and also I believe there is still potential for this band to grow in the coming years to be something so incredible, that it’ll blow us all away.