Album Review: House of Harm – Vicious Pastimes

House of Harm

Vicious Pastimes

Avant! Records

Release date: September 4, 2020

House Of Harm is a post-punk trio from Boston (Massachusetts) formed in 2017. They gained experience and recognition over the time and have done several gigs openings for bands such as She Past Away, Editors, Lust For Youth and Reeves Gabrels (The Cure). Just that!

Vicious Pastimes is their debut LP and it begins with the incredible track Isolator. It starts with an expiration and a strong electro sounds in the style of Ash Code, quickly followed by a catchy rhythm that will make you want to dance. It mixes to perfection melancholia, lively sounds and sadness. It is a real surprise to start with this kind of song, which propels us directly into the spirit of this LP. The following track Coming of Age offers a journey onto the past, like a new wave classic from the 80s with a very present synth.

On this LP we can quickly identify tracks which create a bright and radiant atmosphere such as Behind You and its catchy rhythm, Catch, Waste of Time or Always and some other that are darker like Against the Night, with its heavier pace and supplicant voice. Vicious Pastimes the haunting and gloomy eponym track of this LP, which you have no doubt already heard several times, is working very well. Finally the closing of this LP is done with Control and its lively rhythm, which will remind you of Isolator. That’s how the loop is closed.

With Vicious Pastimes, House Of Harm offer a very well structured debut LP. They do not scatter, and focus on developing the tracks they feel comfortable with. Something radiant and luminous emerges from this LP, even if the themes addressed are rather dark and that melancholy infuse most of the tracks. Everything curiously cohabit marvelously in this set of nine tracks.  

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  • Isolator (3:21)
  • Coming of Age (4:44)
  • Behind You (4:18)
  • Against the Night (3:41)
  • Catch (4:00)
  • Waste of Time (3:47)
  • Vicious Pastimes (4:49)
  • Always (3:16)
  • Control (4:46)

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