Single Review – Half Faith, Half Struggle by Smile (Dotto) (2021)
Turin’s most raucous of jangle-rockers, Smile, are back with their 2nd single since their critically accliamed debut album, The Name of this Band is Smile, was released in March 2021 and it typifies their comfortability within the surrounds of mayhem.
If June’s glorious Hideout single was the band at their uppermost jangly and wonderfully controlled, the innate rocker core that resides within the very heart of this foursome, breaks free from its temporary shackles, as if to blurt out apologies to all and sundry for being the overtly pretty they are always capable of, but is not ‘truly them’.
This Half Faith, Half Struggle single breaks out with immediate fanfare, crashing straight into a wall of guitars, battered percussion and bellowed vocals. In any other hands this would be undiluted 90’s alt.rock…but then Smile are always defiantly ‘other hands’ and as every release hits our ears, are proving to be among the very best of them.
As such, the above mayhem is consistently woven with jangly lead guitars that cavort within the cracks of the noise, threatening to consume the grumble with niceties, before being forced back by another intense barrage of guitars. It is the fact the ‘pretty’ still keeps fighting back, that makes this track the most glorious of conflicts.
Smile are back in the studio working on another album. It is bound to be another barrage of “we’ve got something to say disillusionment,” mixed with jangle-rock guitar beauty. This single is all of that already and stunning!