Here in Illinois, as I write this at the beginning of December, it’s been winter for over a month. We’ve endured multiple ice storms, a blizzard that dumped 12 inches of snow in some spots, and even a day when no fewer than 26 tornadoes touched down across the state. Even by Illinois standards, that’s unusual. There have been plenty of evenings where the most appealing thing to do is curl up by the fireplace, make a pot of swirling hot chocolate, and find the perfect music to help you battle the cold. And that is where Kitchener, Ontario emo-punks Romancer and their wonderful 2017 EP Honeybee come in.
“Emo-punks” doesn’t quite describe Romancer properly though, because Honeybee proves they are so much more – their music has a ever-swirling ambience to it, along with elements of post-rock and even progressive rock. There are constantly changing drum patterns that never fail to surprise (“Nausicaa”). The vocals range from glorious highs that match the scene’s best-known singers to ethereal whispers and falsettos that flow perfectly with the often-soothing electric guitars (“Milo and Pink Regret”).
But perhaps the most captivating feature of Honeybee lies in its painstakingly honest lyrics. Take this stanza from the opening track: “Is there still time/to spend with my dad/he’s getting older every day/there’s so much fun we could’ve had“. Vocalists Adam Horrocks and Riley O’Donnell pour their heaviest emotions into every song, laying bare their hopes, dreams, questions and insecurities. It’s beautiful, relatable, and comforting.
There’s an indescribable warmth to Honeybee, as if Romancer is inviting you into their home to share their stories with you personally. Whether you’re enduring a miserable winter or living it up on a beach somewhere, Romancer is a band you need in your life.
Stream Honeybee‘s all-encompassing second track “Nausicaa” below and keep up with Romancer’s upcoming tour dates across Canada and the USA here.