Weekly EP: Juliet Simms’ “All or Nothing”

Formed in 2007, Automatic Loveletter spoke to teens across the United States with their angsty punk-rock lyrics and Vans Warped Tour-esque lingo. Loveletter’s front woman, Juliet Simms, was a shining star in a sea of gritty, garage band rock music. With her classic and unique rasp, Simms seemed unstoppable, and when the band became mostly dormant around 2011, the rocker found herself lined up for a promising adventure on NBC’s “The Voice.”

During her run on the show, Simms won over viewers with her classic rock covers of “Roxanne” and “It’s A Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World.” Ultimately placing second, it seemed that Simms would have the world at her fingertips. But, after only releasing a single following her reality television career, Simms parted ways with the mainstream industry and record labels all together. In 2014, she found new life in PledgeMusic, where she was successfully crowd-funded for an EP titled “All Or Nothing.”

On the heels of its release, Simms will surely appeal to fans, both old and new. While sometimes falling back too closely to Loveletter’s mid-2000 sound, “All Or Nothing” as a whole is a refreshingly good EP release. It brings out her rasp that is sure to be loved by older audiences, and creates an atmosphere of rebellion that will appeal to those of college ages or younger.

The debut single, also titled “All Or Nothing,” is the EP’s best track. It is anthemic and impressive. Most similar to her work on “The Voice,” she will surely reach the most audiences with this track. Its fiery tone and ferocious guitar-smashing beat will bring out the head-banger in all of us.

On “Mystified,” Simms showcases a fervent side of herself that lines itself with metal-genre guitar streams and echoing lyrics. It is fierce and engrossing. Showing that she has lasting power as a solo act on “Mystified,” Simms exhibits a type of ferociousness that lets listeners know that she’s not backing out of music.

“Evangeline” acts as the EP’s most classically rock tracks. With opening lines and beats reminiscent of Fleetwood Mac, Simms quickly explodes with a climactic chorus. On “All Or Nothing,” this track is refreshingly epitomic of a time many music lovers thought was gone. It will take listeners all of the will power in the world not to jump up and rock out.

“End of The World” and “Not Broken Yet” are two tracks that are more in line with Simms work on Automatic Loveletter. While not a completely terrible aspect, the inability that seems to exist within Simms to part from this mid-2000 punk rock lens is one that is a little underwhelming.

However, even with slight setbacks, the EP as a whole is actually quite amazing. Sifting through the two tracks moments of old-fan appeasement, the new direction that Simms looks to be going into is a welcome one. “All Or Nothing” blends a much more classic rock with a contemporary arrangement that will fill listeners to the brim with excitement.

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