We Stole Fire are a soon to be four piece pop-punk band from Brighton. Obviously, with Brighton being renowned for its sunny disposition, it’s only fitting that Maps is an upbeat and devastatingly catchy release.
The release instantly hooks you in with For All I Should Have Said. The intro is explosive, with a New Found Glory-esque beat that leaves you gasping for more. However, Katie McLean’s vocals don’t quite deliver to begin with. As the EP goes on, she gets stronger, but in this first track, it’s too much of the Americanised Hayley Williams drawl that virtually every female vocalist in the country is affecting and she doesn’t let herself shine. The track is obviously Paramore influenced, but the lead guitar is far better than any of the recent Paramore releases and a solid chorus makes for a good overall start. Standing Strong In Grey kicks it up a notch though. The vocals become far stronger and far more emotive than in the beginning, but are still backed up by a solid rhythm section. Despite not having a permanent live drummer, We Stole Fire have done a great job with the drums on the EP, and I can only imagine how great they’ll be once they’ve secured a proper drummer.
I Miss Home, Sometimes is a touching hometown anthem and the most enthralling song on the EP. It’s fun, bouncy and yet really hits home emotionally. I’ve been singing along to it for days. The EP is rounded off nicely with Trigger Happy, which has an incredible intro which segways neatly into a high octane riffathon that’s bound to get the crowd jumping. McLean’s vocals are truly at their best in this track – the Paramore drawl takes a back seat for the most part and she displays some of the strength and range that she’s truly capable of. The song itself does feel like three different ones threaded together, but the band bridge it together so well and it’s so nuanced that most wouldn’t notice until after some extended listening.
Maps is a really fun release, despite its familiarity. But as Paramore will inevitably fade without the Farro brothers, it’s time for some new blood to take over and as summer’s making its presence known, it’s definitely the sort of release to stick on your stereo and rock out to.
3.5 out of 5 high fives!