Music News

ON THE RISE: The House United Make An Impact With Debut Album, ‘Made of Matches’


Spreading like a wildfire in the heart of the music industry is pop/punk-alt rock outfit The House United. Featuring the exceptional talents of 16-year old singer/songwriter/keyboardist Carmel Paradise Buckingham, Brandon Adams on guitar, Joe Gregory on bass and Austin Arnold on drums, The House United molds a fresh progressive sound derived from a diversity of influences ranging from My Chemical Romance to All Time Low to Red Hot Chili Peppers to Paramore, to Angels and Airwaves, to Switchfoot, to Relient K, to Rush to Muse to The Maine to Rage Against The Machine. It’s a diverse list of influences, yet these acts all have one thing in common…formidable songwriting and an undeniable chemistry. Like their namesake, The House United are unified in mind, music and majesty. They have a proclivity for dynamic delivery.

The House United - "Made of Matches"
The House United – “Made of Matches”

Born in Anchorage Alaska, THU frontwoman Carmel spent her childhood in Slovakia before moving to Nashville to attend high school. Through mutual friends, Ms. Buckingham soon made the acquaintance of Adams, Gregory and Arnold, three music students at Belmont University, and formed the band in early 2014. Armed with a batch of songs she had penned over the course of several years, the quartet fleshed out the instrumentation and headed into prestigious Blackbird Studios in Nashville to record their debut album. Rooted in punk rock spunk, sonic precision and layered sophistication, Made of Matches is awash in a diverse palette of colors, with reggae riddims (“Fallen”), funk grooves (“Made of Matches”), bristling pop doused in rock (“Stay Alive” “Emergency” “New Hampshire”), atmospheric expositions (“Bullet” “Catastrophe”), sweeping ballads (“Come Back Home” “Scarecrow”), and hard rock riffage (“Girls” “Phoenix”) accenting the hallways of their musical mansion.

Lyrically, the album’s themes touch on the effervescence and insouciance of romance and relationships but regardless of the subject, one thing rings true throughout, Carmel’s lyrics portray a distinct pilgrimage. She does not mince words. When she emotes in the title track, “my heart’s on fire and I’m made of matches,” it’s apparent that an explosion is on the horizon. When she yearns in “Bullet,” “I thought you were fighting for me, I guess I was wrong, I thought you were on my side, but you were moving on,” it’s apparent that love has come undone, but not for long as she’s “rising from the ashes and staying fearless” in “Phoenix.” In these songs and throughout her repertoire, her deliberate use of visceral metaphors lays a sturdy emotional foundation for the music to intuitively build upon but none more so than in the soaring closing track “Who Am I” which champions universal acceptance in the face of religious views that skew.

No time for being a scarecrow. It’s time to avert askew and invest your being in something new. Steer clear of the automatic and become an addict as The House United sling frenetic, wax poetic, and unite the emblematic aggregate. Time to light a match and rise up.<

Carmel P. Buckingham (vocals/keys)
Brandon Adams (guitar)
Joe Gregory (bass)
Austin Arnold (drums)

‘Made of Matches’ Tracklisting
1. Catastrophe
2. Stay Alive
3. Made of Matches
4. Girls Who Can’t Have Fun
5. Come Back Home
6. Fallin
7. Emergency
8. New Hampshire
9. Bullet
10. Out of Time
11. Phoenix
12. Scarecrow
13. Who Am I