Frameworks – Small Victories EP (2013)

Every band has one thing in particular that they strive to create in their music. For some bands, it’s the spectrum of emotions that music can evoke or spreading a message that the band stands for. Others enjoy concocting loads of harmonious rhythms for an audience to bounce around.

Frameworks has found their niche by establishing an entire atmosphere within their instruments and delivering it to their fans. This five-piece melodic hardcore band from Gainesville, FL began working with this sound on their first EP, Every Day Is The Same, which proved to be a phenomenal hit from a relatively unknown band. With the raw stone they started out with, Frameworks continued to polish and shape it until it was an illustrious diamond. This diamond is being released to the general public on February 12th under the title Small Victories.

Immediately after starting the first track, “Ida”, I was absorbed into a whole new universe. It begins with a chaotic sound induced by the rapid guitar bursts. However, this doesn’t last long and soon moves you into a more soothing, peaceful melodic portion of the song. The vocals are more passionate and filled with raw emotion this time around, but it is also a lot harder to discern what the vocalist is saying. I really admire how the vocals aren’t the most overpowering thing about Small Victories. Each instrument has just as much importance as the others and nothing trumps the other. The guitar work throughout Small Victories sets the mood by actively switching between states of discord and accord. The riveting riffs sound close to The Chariot at one instance, then the next I would think I’m listening to Circa Survive. Every single vibration of the strings sets down another brick in the path to Frameworks’ alternate world. The drumming lays down the foundation to be built on; the pounding drumwork is incredible in every sense.

The first song transitions right into the second, “Sewn”, seamlessly. This track is similar to the previous one in a lot of regards. The drumming takes on the lead for a bit of the song and builds into a more emotional and strong ending. The third track, “Model Homes”, begins with soft, muffled vocals that come in to knock you out of the park. The tempo of this song is extremely upbeat and makes you want to start moving no matter where you are. This is the perfect example of how Frameworks can make uplifting songs as well as the mellower ones. The bells towards the end of this song are a nice touch. Much like the the first track, this one has a smooth transition into the final song titled “Old Chokes”. The continued use of bells here is calming, and Frameworks even throws in a trumpet for an entire new sound to the mix. The vocals towards the end are masterfully done and really brings Small Victories to a perfect ending that puts tears in my eyes.

One criticism I have about Small Victories is the length. This EP only has a length of eleven minutes, but every second of it is fantastic. Since the first half of the EP feels like one song and the second half feels the same, the EP seems to go by much quicker and feels as if it is over as soon as I started it. As soon as the final song fades out, I am transported back to a bland reality and want to delve back into Frameworks’ world. If you are a fan of ex-Harbours (now HRBRS) or Departures, then I highly recommend getting into Frameworks if you haven’t already. Small Victories is more than enough to keep me occupied until they can put out another release.

By Austin Richburg ~ Me Gusta Reviews