Do you feel at home in this world? Constellations, a melodic metalcore band from Phoenix, Arizona, wrote their latest EP with this question in mind. A commentary on everything from mental health and unhealthy coping mechanisms to the state of today’s world, I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore is set to release on July 10, 2020.
Perfect for fans of Dollskin and Beartooth, Constellations is made up of Brie Ritter (Vocals), Matt Mele (Guitar / Vocals), Elias Bizari (Guitar), Kira Ramirez (Bass), and Shea Moore (Drums) and was formed in 2016. Their debut EP, Two Faced, was released in April 2017. Now, the quintet returns with I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore, a six-track EP full of life.
“Cursed” starts things off with swinging guitar rhythms and a swell of incoming instrumentals. Sweetly rough vocals enter the mix, layering attitude and emotion over the foundation laid by classic pop-punk drum beats. Perfect for fans of Doll Skin, the track’s vocal phrasing combined with its instrumental rhythms make it easy to move to.
Powerful, self-assured lyrical delivery during the chorus combines with detailed verses to form a song that is equal parts catchy and full of story: “It’s been a while since my eyes burned from something that I didn’t burn /A change of heart’s not in my cards , but I know a place and it ain’t too far / All those things I hid before have now come knocking at my door / Not that it’s of your concern, but I don’t think I’ll ever learn / It’s time for me to say this hurts / But all I do is make it worse / When did I get f***ing cursed / It’s time to say its not / It’s not a first.”
“Sleepless” is another example of Constellations’ blunt, powerful lyrics combined with energetic, well-chosen instrumentals. From the very first note, “Sleepless” is aggressive and unapologetic. Heavier than the previous track thanks to metal-based riffs and vocals, “Sleepless” flows dynamically through each section without pause. Albeit more instrumentally-focused, the track’s lyrics are just as expressive and relatable for those who take the time to listen: “Trapped in my mind / Like I’m buried alive / Head full of worms / Because I’m empty inside / Can’t shake this mindset I’ve misled / Rip my heart out my chest.”
The next track is titled “Under the Skin.” Combining Constellations’ powerful instrumentals with lighter vocals, the song is well placed to transition the EP to its midpoint while tying musical themes together. Anthemic vocals drift across booming bass drum and grinding guitar tones, bringing in a bit of the Beartooth influence that makes Constellations’ music appealing to my ear in particular. Even in its quiet moments, “Under the Skin” continues the momentum until the very end of its 3:40 running time.
“Sick Sad World” picks back up with echoing guitar tones and a transitional feel. As the track moves through tempo and attitude changes, the energy dips and twists alongside the instrumentals, at times leaving the vocals to be the focus. Although not a stand-out of the EP at first glance, “Sick Sad World’s” lyrics tell an important story of someone who finds their worth after letting others tear them down: “No more wasting my time / I’ve figured out what I’m worth / I’ve got mountains to climb / So draw the line ’cause I’m tired of feeling hurt / Cant get you out of my head / Sink your teeth into my tongue / Until I taste that red / When will it ever be enough?” “Sick Sad World” shows that progress isn’t always linear, but that everyone should do their best to work towards believing in their own value in this world.
“Frostbite” brings the EP back to its faster, heavier side. We’re thrown into the thick of things without much transition, making for a bit of an abrupt start. The no-nonsense approach to an introduction leaves little time to get accustomed to the track’s aesthetic, but its rolling patter of drumbeats and driving guitar elevate the pace until listeners have no choice but to come along. Slowing around the two-minute mark to emphasize the vocals and catch its metaphorical breath, “Frostbite” dissolves into classic breakdown rhythms. The ups and downs of the track make it dynamic and interesting, but not for everyone’s casual listening taste.
The final song of I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore is”CAOS.” Incorporating many musical themes from previous tracks such as rolling guitar rhythms and aggressive drum beats, the song ties the EP up nicely. The emotional, bold delivery of the track’s poignant lyrics makes for an unyielding final song from beginning to end: “You left a hole (where you used to be) / Your eyes now unfamiliar to me / You let me down (so gently) /Show me you can walk on water / And I’ll be your lamb to slaughter / If you hear the sound / I hope you’re listening.”
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