Review: Empty Streets' New EP, Age of Regret, Available Now

Darkwave act Empty Streets' newest EP, Age of Regret, is finally out! The album uses darkly poignant lyrics to make a splash in the industry. Here's what we think of the album release!

A glamour shot of Aaron Thompson (also known as Small Hands), the mastermind behind Empty Streets, whose new EP, Age of Regret, is now available.
A glamour shot of Aaron Thompson (also known as Small Hands), the mastermind behind Empty Streets, whose new EP, Age of Regret, is now available. Image provided by PR and credit to Storm Santos.

The opening track, "Pleaser," begins the album with what sounds like an instrumental lamentation. From this point, it is clear that Empty Streets' album is going to be dark, moody, and more than worth our time due to its content. The instrumentation acts as a dirge throughout the track, almost moaning in sorrow, which is a great way to convey the message of the lyrical content.

The eponymous second track, "Age of Regret," continues the tone of the first track, singing of "lines of poison" and repetition in life. This track seems to live up to its role as the song that lends its name to the EP.

Track three, "All You Deserve," starts out as a drudge through industrial instrumentation, but as the vocals kick in, that sloughs away in favor of a considerably more chill track. Even with the lyrics going as hard as they do, the track feels mellow while simultaneously being very powerful and poignant. It does end rather abruptly, and as a result, leaves us wanting more of it.

The fourth track, "Millions," changes the tone of the album from what we experience in the previous three tracks to something more triumphant but still sings of pain and fire. This tonal shift feels refreshing by comparison, and one can only hope that the rest of the tracks don't revert too heavily back to the status quo established by the previous tracks (not that there's anything wrong with that!).

Track five, "Heartthrob of the Ages," does not completely revert but rather changes tones again, from a triumphant epiphany to a defiant climax for whatever kind of sorrow-filled story Empty Streets is aiming to tell. While the triumph is still very much present, there is an anger in this track that finally gets resolved by the end of it, and we are here to sympathize!

The penultimate track, "Was That Not Enough," featuring Ace Von Johnson of Faster Pussycat and L.A. Guns fame, feels as though it is going back to the same darkwave sadness as before, but in a way that denotes that it is separate from the previous tracks. It feels like it is a resurgence of this same sentiment from "Age of Regret" or "Pleaser" but after the resolution of the album as a whole. Is it cyclical, or is it just the end of the resolution of things? We may never know.

The seventh and final track of this album, "I've Been Riding With A Ghost," which is a cover of a song by the late, great Jason Molina, also known as Songs: Ohia seems a heavy departure from the typical lyrical tonality of the rest of the album. This is understandable, given that it's a cover, and it isn't unwelcome, either. As a cover, the best we can do is speak on its musicality, and that does fit with both the track's lyrics and with the album as a whole. It makes for a very fitting ending for the Age of Regret EP.

A second promotional glamour shot of Aaron Thompson, the mastermind behind darkwave act Empty Streets, whose EP Age of Regret is available now.
A second promotional glamour shot of Aaron Thompson, the mastermind behind darkwave act Empty Streets, whose EP Age of Regret is available now. Image provided by PR and credit to Storm Santos.

All in all, Empty Streets' newest EP is a strong, poignant, and sad album, and that is not a bad thing at all. We look forward to seeing what Empty Streets will create after Age of Regret.

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About Joshua Nelson

Josh Nelson is a Magic: The Gathering deckbuilding savant, a self-proclaimed scholar of all things Sweeney Todd, and, of course, a writer for Bleeding Cool. In their downtime, Josh can be found painting models, playing Magic, or possibly preaching about the horrors and merits of anthropophagy. You can find them on Twitter at @Burning_Inquiry for all your burning inquiries.
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