Auckland rock four-piece Ekko Park’s sophomore album follows up the impressive success of their debut ‘Tomorrow Tomorrow Today’. With the help of an internationally renowned production team in Greg Haver and Adrian Hall, ‘Know Hope’ more than aspires to eclipse the previous release, delivering in every aspect. Surface Breaks initiates the record in style, the signature vocal tones of front man Joe Walsh penetrating the mix with aplomb, while the thumping, organic rhythm section of Nick Douch and Callum Tong lays the groundwork for the melodic guitar lines of Joel Halstead. Catchy choruses and crafted songwriting give way to roaring guitars at the finish. Radio track Probable Cause provides sizzling lead melodies, along with dynamic and building arrangements and undeniable energy, and sees the rhythm section transform into an engine room as the song unrelentingly pounds out its intent. Whistleblower sees Ekko Park stretch their wings compositionally with a chorus that simultaneously builds and delivers, before a bridge section swerves melodies together in a beautiful crash. Faking Shadows pulls back in arrangement, showing another side to the band. Wake Up makes the perfect closing track. Memorable and catchy, driving and deliberate, it is the summary of all that is good about this record. ‘Know Hope’ encapsulates the sounds and energy of a rock band that is achieving what it is has set out to do; deliver sculpted rock tracks with vital performances, packaged and presented to full effect. There is a polish that readily lends itself to markets beyond our shores; but that in no way excludes Kiwi rock fans from enjoying this top shelf local effort.