Breaking Pangaea Cannon to a Whisper

With this sophomore release, and their first full-length, Philadelphia trio Breaking Pangaea are poised to assume their place alongside some of the great new-school emo bands like the Appleseed Cast, Dashboard Confessional and the Juliana Theory. Their appreciation for thoughtfully crafted, epic rock songs and literate, intelligent storytelling makes them a force to be reckoned with. As guitarist/vocalist Fred Mascherino says, the band is just doing what comes naturally. "We're just trying to play what we play," he reasons. "We pay attention to every single part; every chord, every rhythm. We put as much as we want to into each song and then it just sort of comes out the way we want it. It's not conscious. Each of us likes drastically different stuff. Will doesn't like a lot of emo, he's more into rock and hardcore, so he's always trying to get us to throw stuff in. I feel like the rhythm section is what really came out on this record. I would bring a song in with the chords and the words and those guys would rip apart and start over, which was really frustrating but the product came out good." The aptly-titled Cannon to a Whisper, which perfectly describes their dynamic sound, also marks a real musical progression for the band over their solid but inconsistent five-song debut EP, Take Apart the Words, which Mascherino is quick to point out "we wrote when we were only about a month old." With more time together, they have harnessed their varied musical influences, which run the gamut from punk fury to Pink Floyd, and have developed a sound they can call their own. And while the songs are long-ish, they are not the slightest bit pretentious or unnecessarily meandering. "We're always thinking about the listener and we're not going to take more liberties than they're going to listen to," Mascherino says with a laugh. (Undecided)