across/state/lines, made up of Emily Coffey (lyrics, vocals and keys) from Maine, and Ray Brunelle (guitar and bass) who resides in ND, define themselves as an ‘internet emo band’. They have just unleashed their single, “Below Zero” which will feature on their upcoming EP. This project is proof that sometimes you don’t need a final destination to make the music you want to make. With their goals seemingly set on writing the best songs they can as a collaborative unit – whether it is just a song, an EP, an album, or whatever they are chipping away at, across/state/lines come away from their recording sessions with something they can be proud of.
What across/state/lines left their recording sessions with now, is their new single “Below Zero”, and it’s by far one of the most intriguing pop-punk and rock records heard to date this year. “Below Zero” is meant to hit you all at once with multiple musical flavors. There are so many emotions and sonic angles to digest in this three and a half minute record upon the first listen.
From churning guitars to soaring chord progressions and clean melodic vocals, onto high-speed rhythms, harsh growling verses and bone-crushing metalcore bombast, across/state/lines leave no sonic stone unturned on “Below Zero”. By the end of it all, one has experienced the full power of the varying soundscapes and the dynamic tones that Emily and Ray wants us to sense and feel.
Starting with the first moment of “Below Zero”, across/state/lines shows a confident and infectious side to their instrumentality while also presenting vulnerability within their lyricism. For a first time listen to this band, it sounds like the perfect opener to a gateway of other tracks that will soon follow this record. “Below Zero” speaks volumes to the band’s creativity and willingness to go outside of the box to get their message across lyrically and musically.
Catchy and mellifluous the one-minute, abrasive and annihilating the next, “Below Zero” rolls a handful of rock n’ roll subgenres into one explosive mix. across/state/lines have bought that raw, gritty spark and melodic shine back into the emo scene with this record, and honestly, the year would not have been complete without it. Moreover, the band makes a powerful and emotional statement, about relationships, commitment, loss and memories.
You’d be hard pressed to find another emo-influenced band, in 2022, producing the kind of vibrant and forceful music that across/state/lines have delivered with “Below Zero”. Its raw, uncompromising and visceral in its approach, yet perfectly embellished to appeal to a wide range of punk, rock and even metal fans. This song starts strong and ends even stronger.
The balancing act between melody and bombast, which across/state/lines execute almost effortlessly, is something that listeners will soon become acutely familiar with on “Below Zero”. It is perfected by genuinely disparate sonic flourishes that radically expand the band’s sonic palette. This is what gives Emily Coffey and Ray Brunelle’s collaborative project such appeal and uniqueness.