EP Review: Beaumont - Honestly

Written by Maddy Howell

With a name derived from a Shakespearian character in Henry V, who notoriously died without speaking a word, Birmingham quintet Beaumont’s use of their platform to openly discuss their mental struggles forms a juxtaposition in itself. Ahead of their shows with The Gospel Youth and Milestones, the alternative rockers return with 'Honestly', the follow-up to 2016’s 'Nothing'.

'Honestly' opens on lead single Happiness/Joy, a high-octane, fast-paced track broadcasting Beaumont’s unique take on modern Brit-rock. Reminiscent of early You Me At Six, the track opens the EP in a jubilant manner, with the lyrical focus on frontman Spencer Edmonds struggles with mental illness and overcoming the sadness within him.

Satellites shows the pace being slowed, with the more downbeat lyrical content pushed to the forefront. It’s here that the band’s indie influence is put on display, with the infectious chorus baring echoes of The Xcerts and Twin Atlantic.

Although the energy levels fluctuate slightly and give way on slow-burner Hurler, Beaumont still manage to maintain their appeal and remain absorbing. Edmonds’ vocals are delivered softly over a delicate guitar tone, before kicking into a captivating tale of mental well-being and the idea of success. Reminiscent of bands that have found their footing in the scene, such as Lower Than Atlantis, the blend of pop-punk, indie and alternative rock on the track enable it to captivate and intrigue, despite the drop in pace.

Filled with tantalising hooks, bouncy riffs and convivial vocal melodies Rosemary presents Mitchell Dornan’s drum melodies coming into their own, providing a backbone for the track to become a standout moment on the EP. Space is also given for Edmonds to demonstrate his vocal strength, with the acute notes on the bridge proving his impressive capabilities.

Dependent shows Beaumont straying from the norm of what is expected of their scene and developing the poppier elements of their sound, opening on a gritty, grungy riff before plunging into a more pop-punk influenced zone. Beaumont’s willingness to venture into the riskier areas of exploring their musical boundaries is what ultimately proves their worth on 'Honestly', with nearly all efforts paying off substantially.

The pace is slowed once more as the EP draws to a close on Runners High, presenting Edmonds’ airing his mental struggles and voicing his concerns in a more stripped back fashion. The band’s capability to perform in this sense is what comes as a definitive show of what they are able to produce, with their catchy hooks resigned to the back seat on a more downbeat moment of the EP.

With their juxtaposition of poppy hooks and melancholic lyrics, Beaumont are something refreshing in a scene outweighed with clich├ęs and exhausted tropes. 'Honestly' offers a darker and more mature take on the band’s sound, whilst retaining the catchy and more refined style of 2016’s 'Nothing'. Whilst this EP doesn’t quite have the immediate bite that 'Nothing' possessed, its gripping melodies and distinctive vocals give an indication of the triumphant path Beaumont are set on.