Published May 27, 2016Clique are four fellas from Philly full of love, and pain, and who still believe in things, like starting petitions to protect their hometown's DIY underground music scene and to prevent motorists from parking in bike lanes.
Burden Piece follows their track featured on a fantastic split with Loose Tooth, Mumblr and Ghost Gum in 2015, which followed their self-titled debut in 2014. As on that record, they recorded Burden Piece at Headroom, a space through which similarly emotive acts like Joyce Manor and Modern Baseball have also passed.
Weighty emotions, conveyed through thoughtful vocal harmonies and delicate guitar parts that alternate between pretty and off-kilter, form Clique's somewhat skeletal sound. Though faster, fleshier tracks ("Mess," "Saline," "Crater," "Wishful Thinking") satisfyingly shake the listener awake, this isn't the main intent. Labels indie and emo are most apt here, but there is also an inherently folk undercurrent to Burden Piece, offering unassuming comfort music to feel like crap to, to drink and pass out to.
With its overall sleepy sound, the 13-track album could stand to be a few tracks shorter, but the band's snippet strategy — utilizing unconventional, incomplete song structures for several songs — helps listeners hang on out of curiosity for what comes next. It's the sign of band knowing what they do best, and it makes Burden Piece the compelling album it is. (Topshelf)