Teenage alienation, early relationships, and social awkwardness are certainly not new creative themes in the realm of rock. As I age I inevitably find many of the inhibitions and preoccupations that I held in deep concern not that long ago to seem laughably vapid and a consequence of the inevitable self-absorption of youth. Unfortunately Heyrocco does not seem to have transitioned out of the high school mindset and many of their tracks deal with the themes mentioned at the beginning of my review. At their best, Heyrocco resemble an uptempo take on the Red House Painters. At their worst, Heyrocco have a less than successful attempt at the capture of teen angst. Heyrocco tend to play these themes uncomfortably straight, seemingly lacking enough tongue in cheek acknowledgment to the audience that they’re in on the joke.
One thing I will say about Heyrocco is that the instrumentation is very solid, ranging from jangly 60’s pop riffs to more fuzz-laced 90’s influenced guitar. “Loser Denial” is what I believe was an attempt to parody teen concerns. However the too earnest delivery of the vocals come off more as a mal-adjusted fifteen year old’s diary rantings. “Melt” at least has a humorous approach on the subject of pre-mature ejaculation. The “too pretty” vocals are still a bit of a turn off (pun unintended) in the delivery of the lyrics and aside from the one note joke “Melt” doesn’t have much to offer.
“Elsewhere” is a somewhat more conventional indie-song, notable for it’s good instrumentation with otherwise unoriginal lyrics. “Happy” is without a doubt, the best song on the album. The more subdued vocal styles and the abandonment of the high school theme do a great service to the track and the contrast between the clean chorus and fuzz guitars create an interesting dynamic. Heyrocco have produced an album that has some issues. However with tracks like “Happy,” I have high hopes for this band when it grows out of its extended adolescence.