In just over sixteen minutes and with only six songs, Reminder try to do a lot on Of all the Things You Are. Too much, in fact. Right off the bat, this EP could have been two songs shorter. “One Year Away” and “Feline Fine” both fall into the pop-punk pitfall of music that just isn’t melodically strong enough to hold up the cliché lyrics.
That’s why it’s so surprising when the song “Head Over Heals” grooves into action. This song and the following two tracks sound like they were written by an entirely different band. This version of Reminder is sophisticated and tasteful, as opposed to the juvenile and frankly unremarkable version we hear on the opening tracks. “Think Back” is another standout number. It’s a fun ska-funk song that should have skankers skanking and moshers moshing at frat parties everywhere.
The last two songs are a mixed bag. It sounds like the grownup, laid back Reminder tried to reconcile their differences with the childish and silly Reminder, and it just comes off as a blur of awkward transitions and forced melodies.
Look, just because you know how to mess around with rhythms and song structures doesn’t mean you should do it to excess. Moderation is a very important concept to keep in mind, especially when almost none of your songs even reach the minute mark. Otherwise it’s such a whirlwind of sound that nothing has time to stick, even if the initial ideas are solid. Reminder clearly have the talent and the chops, especially the double guitar attack of Cameron Kennedy and Gibson Walker. However Walker’s melodies should definitely be given more chances to breathe and flourish on the next set of songs. I seriously think they need to give their compositional approach a second look. The Fall of Troy, a clear influence here, learned to tone down their bullshit on later releases. It’s a solid lesson to follow.
Written by Syd Ghan