Matt Pryor

Memento Mori

Equal Vision Records / Rory Records

Rating: 3/5




Matt Pryor, best known for his work in The Get Up Kids, has been quietly amassing a sizeable library of solo work.  Given the focus of his seminal emo band, it’s not surprising that Pryor’s independent output retains strong emotional overtones.  Defined largely as an acoustic affair,  Pryor’s unmistakably fragile vocals communicate a deeply personal and intimate connection with his work.  His latest effort, Memento Mori, showcases Pyror’s pensive, wispy demeanor, making for an album every bit as light at it is somber.  Memento Mori isn’t something to sing along to on a sunny day, but rather a collection of tracks well worth contemplating while gazing through a rain-drizzled window.

Laced with soft strung guitar chords and lightly landing piano notes, opener “Mary” sets Memento Mori up as a very unassuming introduction.  “Mary, I’m sorry, I didn’t have the will to fight, the fire in the house tonight,” apologizes Pryor during his opening lines.  A sense of sadness pervades each word – washing a wave of defeat over listeners.  It’s the type of song that takes a few listens before its full weight bares itself, but certainly grows into something quite intimate once familiar.  Others  like “A Small Explosion” expand on this sense of growth with wispy harmonies elevating choruses without giving into the temptation of writing a mainstream Chris Carrabba radio single.  Further songs like “Sidney,” “I Won’t Be Afraid,” and “When We Go Wrong” showcase Pryor’s knack for maintaining this sense of balance throughout Memento Mori.

The only potential issue that some may find with the album is that the’s rather slow, methodical pacing, gets a little sluggish.  Tracks like “Where Is Juan Carlos” perhaps overdo the slow and somber approach, risking a mid-album lull in energy.  Thankfully the disc never coasts to a complete stop, but there are a few moments that may have benefited from slight nudge on the accelerator.

Matt Pryor offers another solid installment in his emotional series of solo albums.  The album isn’t his most distinct work (that honour remains with May Day), but maintains many of the songwriting hallmarks of which Pryor’s fan base admires him for.  All in all, Memento Mori is a safe and enjoyable addition to Pryor’s discography.

Video: Matt Pryor – Mary

11183_JKTMatt Pryor has premiered a new music video from his latest solo album in full.  The video features the single “Mary” and the disc is called Memento Mori, which dropped back in February via Equal Vision Records/Rory Records.

Watch the video below.

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Video: Museum Mouth – ‘Riff From My Head’

Museum MouthHailing from Wilmington, N.C., indie band Museum Mouth is premiering a new music video over at CLRVYNT. Watch Riff From My Head here.

Riff From My Head comes from the band’s latest album Popcorn Fish Guinea Pig which released on April 29, 2016 via Rory Records, Max Bemis’ (Say Anything) imprint on Equal Vision Records.

Museum Mouth will support Against Me! with Mal Blum at The Throne Theatre in Wilmington on March 11.

Video: Museum Mouth – Riff From My Head

Museum MouthNorth Carolina fuzzy garage act Museum Mouth has premiered a new music video.  The video features the track “Riff From My Head,” from their recent LP, Popcorn Fish Guinea Pig, which was released back in April 2016 via Rory Records/Equal Vision.

Watch the video below.

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Matt Pryor Details New LP; Streams First Track

11183_JKTMatt Pryor has announced that he will be reelasing a new solo album in the new year.  The disc will be titled Memento Mori, and will drop on February 17, 2017 via Equal Vision Records/Rory Records.  Pryor speaks the album’s inspiration:

“We lost a lot of people close to us in the last couple of years… This album is both a way for us to remember them and to celebrate everyday the lives that we still have.”

Coinciding with the announcement comes the premiere of the new song “A Small Explosion,” which can be heard below.

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Rory Records Welcomes Museum Mouth

Museum MouthNorth Carolina indie rockers Museum Mouth have signed on with Rory Records / Equal Vision RecordsRory Records label pioneer Max Bemis explains what attracted him to the band:

Museum Mouth is a game-changing band for me as a fan of punk and indie rock… The mixture of “actually mature” humor and self-deprecation with cathartic, forward thinking energy and sonic choices, makes them a great band to represent a generation of smart kids with complex feelings that need to be addressed, but don’t want to be bored to tears in doing so. Karl as a songwriter and frontman is as unique as any I’ve come across and listening to this band makes me want to just dance my heart out. Add this to the fact that Karl is among a very rare breed of punk rock frontmen to unapologetically defy the sexual stereotype of the sullen, whiny heterosexual male, and I think it’s easy to see why I had to sign this band and recommend them to any listener who craves music that’s authentic, immediate and brilliant.”

The video features the song “Sacred” from their recent new album, Alex I Am Nothing, which dropped in 2014 via Self Aware Records.

Check out the video below.

Matt Pryor Announces Live Album

MattPryor_NineFortyLive-webGet Up Kids front man Matt Pryor has announced plans to release a new live solo album.  The disc will be titled Nine Forty Live and captures a live audio album recorded at a special, intimate performance at the Lawrence Arts Center this past January. The album will be released on December 9, 2014 through Rory Records/Equal Vision Records. Pryor shares his intent:

“I’ve been trying to make this mini-orchestra show happen for about eight years. I love how it turned out but I don’t think I’ll ever do it again. It’s a logistical nightmare. Good thing we got it on tape.”

Be sure to catch Pryor on the road.  Current and upcoming dates are below.

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Perma (Max Bemis/Sherri DuPree-Bemis) Announce Debut Full Length

PermaHusband and wife duo Max Bemis (Say Anything) and Sherri DuPree-Bemis (Eisley) have announced details for their debut full length.  The disc will be titled Two of a Crime and is set to be released on Rory Records – Bemis’ imprint label within Equal Vision Records.  Max Bemis explains:

“I love being in Say Anything, and I plan on continuing to do so for as long as I’m around. However, the history of that band is fraught with all kinds of ups and downs and demons and darkness. It’s part of what makes it special.Perma is a whole other kind of animal. How much more organic and fun for a start of a band can you get then just having it be a private joke between two people falling in love? Sherri and I literally started writing songs together for the singular purpose of wooing each other, and once we got the wooing done, it was to continue to expand upon our love for one another. That’s whatPerma is, and it’s pure in that respect. As Say Anything progresses on its manic spectrum of darkness and light, I realized I absolutely NEEDED to have an outlet to express the part of me I never have to doubt, which is my love for Sherri… Recording this record was literally like a sigh of relief. I’m so incredibly proud of this record.”

Sherri elaborates:

“We’re both hopeless romantics, so getting to just have free reign on that topic and being able to let loose and even sometimes get a little silly about it was so natural and very true to who we are as a couple. We have a lot of fun together but also have a very deeply passionate love and I think this album captures both sides of that story.”

For the first taste of the project, listen to the title track below.

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Saves The Day Return To Equal Vision Records; Announce New Album

Saves The DaySaves The Day have announced their eighth studio album. The self-titled release will be coming out on September 17th via Rory Records, an imprint of Equal Vision Records created by Max Bemis of Say Anything.

Saves The Day frontman Chris Conley explains, “Hard to believe it’s been 15 years since we put out the debut Saves The Day album on Equal Vision Records. Back then, I was just a kid, 17 years old and still in high school. Somehow, after our demo was rejected by all the other indie labels of the time, Steve from EVR called us up on a landline and asked if we’d like to make a record. We were in the middle of rehearsing some new songs in a basement somewhere in New Jersey, and we dropped our instruments and jumped up and down, excited and amazed. No way to know that when we got the call it was the beginning of what would be an incredible journey through the world of music and beyond. In retrospect, I can see clearly that without Steve and Equal Vision Records, there would be no Saves The Day. After all these years, I still hold holy gratitude in my heart for Steve and his faith in our music. Signing back to Equal Vision feels like coming home.”

The full tracklisting has been revealed and the band will be embarking on a US tour this fall. Check out the details below.

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Equal Vision Records Launches Rory Records/Signs Tallheart/Tour (U.S.)

Equal Vision RecordsThe Tampa, Florida based band TALLHART has signed to Equal Vision Records. The indie rock quartet is the first band signed to Rory Records – the newly launched EVR imprint label of Say Anything frontman Max Bemis.

TALLHART (previously known as Marksmen) will release their Equal Vision Records/Rory Records debut EP in Spring of 2012. The album was recorded in Tampa, FL with Max Bemis, Tim McTague  (Underoath), and Dean Tidey (Feeder) serving as producers. The track “Fever (Sister Of Mine)” will be released on March 6th as a digital single. This album will be the follow-up to two previous self-releases put out under the name Marksmen, The Blue and Grey EP (2010) and their full-length album Sister of Mine (2011). TALLHART will be on tour this Spring of 2012.

Tour dates can be found below. 

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Equal Vision Records Signs Tallhart

Equal Vision RecordsIn conjunction with their own imprint label, Rory Records, Equal Vision has signed Tampa based indie rock band Tallhart.  An EP is expected out this spring with the first single from the record being released March 6, 2012. 

A clip of the single can be heard below.

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