Monday 26 September 2016


GenresPunk / Hardcore / Emo / Emotive Hardcore / Screamo / Skramz / Experimental
Related artistsChapman Park, Airoes, Kossabone Red, Some Soviet Station and Electrosleep Int'l.
CountryAtlanta, Georgia USA
Years Active1996-2001
Song: "Less Sugar"
Album: "All My Chances"
Year: 2001
For fans ofInkwell, Sinking Steps...Rising EyesSaetiaYou And ILonely Animals, Still Life, Amber Inn, Indian Summer, I Hate Myself, The South, Rites Of Spring, The Spirit Of Versailles, The Mock Heroic, The Story Of Floating Weeds, Pubes Floral, Districts, The Last Forty Seconds, Tonnn, Hugs, Adobe Homes, Caught In The Fall, Eyes Of Verotika, For Want Of, Light The Fuse And Run, September, The Saddest Landscape and Loom aka PROPER SCREAMO.
Label(s): Self Released / Sanguine Records / Stickfigure Records
This post's artist is from the September 2016 Mix. This is track #7.
You can download: the September 2016 Mix#9 right here or get the new October 2016 Mix#10 here.

A massively overlooked mid-late 90s screamo band, perhaps the first ever to utilize a violin, was Atlanta's PORTRAIT. The band created primarily emotive hardcore punk music with screaming and some chaotic, semi-mathy stuff along with midwestern 90s emo. And then there's that aforementioned violin that is there but only prominent when called for, like Respire's trumpet, and never overextends its welcome like some additional instrumentation (synths/keyboards, I'm looking primarily in your direction). Not only does the band sound like Sinking Ships...Rising Eyes because of the violin, but the rest of the music isn't far off, either, and could also be likened to You And I in terms of their screamy, emotive hardcore style. PORTRAIT released a demo, two 7" EPs, a 10"EP/LP and a complete discography cd in their six years together from 1996 to 2001. Let's start from the beginning, shall we?

The 1997 'Demo' tape is four songs of violin led emo with very unstable clean vocals. When the screaming kicks in the songs sound much more cohesive and full and as there is more of this than the warbling singing it's still a great listen and fantastic debut by the band. Should you jam only one song from this make it "Incandescence" as it has a strong resemblance to You And I and Inkwell, but in all honesty they are all pretty much You And I worship.

1998 saw the band's first vinyl EP released as the 'Portrait' 7". These three songs are excellent early screamo that is both heavy and serene simultaneously. "Once an Englishman" has a great intro with some clean and quick riffing and playful Saetia sounding bass, but as the song progresses there are certainly some weak vocals. It's also worth mentioning that the latter half of this song is driven primarily by the violin and it works out quite well. "Something in Philadelphia" is a cross between Inkwell screamy hardcore and Sinking Steps...Rising Eyes progressive and experimental screamo by weaving the violin in perfectly, especially during the opening minute. Following that the track drops off a cliff and descends into dark and massive breakdowns with multiple screamers, as well as that violin that makes the song additionally devilish. "Always Sacred" is a pretty crazy screamy hardcore song that might be the heaviest thing the band ever recorded and was recorded during these sessions but not released until the 2004 discography cd.

PORTRAIT's self titled 10" was released in 1999 and includes five tracks spanning 23 minutes, and therefore could probably be called an LP. The opener "Even Now" is a screamy romp through late 90s chaotic, emotive hardcore and is the best song here. "Quiet Company" begins with playful, instrumental emo and is a decent PORTRAIT song (think Saetia on this one), along with "Missing the Shore" which is most definitely very violin heavy. "Constellations of a Stargazing Iris" is nearly six minutes of driving music whose equivalent is an emotionally unstable rollercoaster. The 10" closes with "North Ebony" which also eclipses five minutes but is a very different beast, focusing instead on an instrumental, almost medieval-like first half, with the latter being quite the opposite and including lots of heavier, screamier post-hardcore.

In 2001, apparently after the band had already called it a day, the last 7" titled 'All My Chances' was released and is very 'Cryonics'-era Hot Cross sounding. The opener "All My Chances" is pretty darn catchy and repetitive so you'll likely find yourself yelling out, "try to forget all my chances!" Junction at Barcelona" is the chillest of all the songs and more of a post-rock/emo song than anything else. The closer "Less Sugar" is the mathiest and screamiest on here, and is my favourite all-time PORTRAIT song. Seriously this final 7" is fantastic and a fitting (although unfortunate) last offering from a band that was ahead of its time and still frustratingly unknown.

Download that discography, please. Where? Heeeeeeeya!


Click )==>here<==( to download the band's complete discography in wma form.

1997 - Demo cassetteEP

1998 - Portrait 7"EP

1999 - Portrait 10"EP

2000 - Portrait cdLP (1997-1999 material)

2001 - All My Chances 7"EP

2004 - Complete Discography cdLP


(2001) PORTRAIT - "Less Sugar" (from 'All My Chances')

(2001) PORTRAIT - "All My Chances" (from 'All My Chances')

(1999) PORTRAIT - "Even Now" (from 'Portrait' 10")

(1999) PORTRAIT - "Constellations of a Stargazing Iris" (from 'Portrait' 10")

(1998) PORTRAIT - "Something in Philadelphia" (from 'Portrait' 7")

(1998) PORTRAIT - "Always Sacred" (from 'Portrait' 7" sessions)

(1997) PORTRAIT - "Incandescence" (from 'Demo')


PORTRAIT out of print wma discography download

(download here)

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