EP Review: fever // Against The Current

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Pop-rock trio Against The Current dropped their latest EP fever on 23 July, their first release since their 2018 sophomore album. However, fever couldn’t stray further from Past Lives and marks an impressive return to their roots, after the pop-sounding Past Lives sometimes felt distanced from the music fans had initially fallen in love with. 

The new EP’s success can be attributed to the band’s return to their rockier roots, in conjunction with emotive and rebellious lyrics that speak to every one of us. fever feels like a natural progression from the band’s earlier works, particularly the Gravity EP. 

The seven-song EP may be a surprise for fans expecting an album as the trio has teased, however, the EP simply makes up half of their upcoming album. The tracklist is incredibly cohesive. Opening with ‘that won’t save us’, the first single of the fever era was released in October 2020, and immediately became a fan favourite. It has a much darker and moodier feel than the songs from the Past Lives era. The track also much more guitar-driven and flows off triumphant energy, which almost feels like the release of pent-up frustration. The track feels almost symbolic of the band’s rebirth into their rockier sound — a statement of intent for what fever delivers. 

The second single ‘weapon’ keeps the new themes established by the band’s rebirth in ‘that won’t save us’ and flows easily. The chorus explodes with the lyric “I see red” in a way that feels reminiscent of “It feels like I’m paralyzed” from ‘Paralyzed’ on the band’s Gravity EP. Clever references to past releases such as Past Lives’ “bittersweet surrender” close ‘weapon’. 

The EP then transitions into ‘again&again’, the final pre-release single. Smart lyricism is used again in the repetition of lyrics to connect to the song’s title, and the song includes a feature from guardin. The band is capitalising on the successes of a new generation of emo rappers. 

‘jump’ is one of Against The Current’s finest, containing the same intense choral entrance heard in ‘weapon’. The lyrics almost feel as if a call to arms to their fans, a message that the band has ‘jumped back’ to their origins, “to find your way back home”. But also, it’s a call for fans to take a ‘jump’ into their own dreams. The intent behind the lyrics once again draws parallels to the Gravity EP. The track shares lyrical similarities with ‘Brighter’ combined with the rebellious energy of ‘Talk’. 

The EP then begins to wind down with the final three tracks, ‘shatter’, ‘burn it down’ and ‘lullaby’. The first of these is the most underrated from the release. Its soporific melody combines with triumphant lyrics, becoming an anthem of mental strength: “you won’t see me shatter”. 

The final and fan-favourite track ‘lullaby’—appropriately named—closes the EP out well. Unlike ‘shatter’, it boasts a punchier chorus that Against The Current have made their signature on fever. It leaves a feeling that much more is to come—appropriate as fans anticipate the second half of the upcoming album.

Words by Mary Atkinson


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