REVIEW: Milemarker – “Carrboro”
by Chad Jewett
“This could have been a great story, but it wasn’t”. So begins the new single from the newly reactivated Milemarker. As wry and strangely anthemic as ever, “Carrboro” finds the band – originally hailing from Chapel Hill, North Carolina; now centered in Germany – mining a vein similar to the aesthetic that marked classics like Frigid Forms Sell (which is being reissued by Lovitt Records, who are also releasing the band’s forthcoming LP Overseas). This means post-hardcore that keeps all the angles and sudden turns, but swaps out some of those spiky guitars for decaying synthesizers. In the case of “Carrboro”, that means high keyboard harmonies that halo the song throughout, lending lush counterpoint to the band’s sawing riffs. But Milemarker have also maintained their keen ear for melody – it’s striking just how tuneful “Carrboro” is, even as it makes room for an extended, texture-focused outro (a bending guitar that enters around the 3:20 mark might as well be an extra chorus) or for post-chorus stretches dedicated more to interplay than hooks. This is all to say that, as on last year’s “Conditional Love”, Milemarker have returned with striking confidence and a sense of creative purpose that is downright inspiring.