Choir Vandals – At Night EP Review
Two months ago, I received a copy of this EP and was intrigued by the band’s unique approach to alternative rock, but I decided not to review the music, as it was released four months earlier, and wasn’t really “new” music anymore. But, over that time, I’ve thought about the band frequently.
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So, now, two months later with the music further removed from it’s release date, I’ve finally succumbed and taken the dive into the music that I should have reviewed two months ago.
Choir Vandals are a fresh quartet out of St. Louis. Yup, that’s right – St. Louis, Missouri, the home of, um, of, well, no one, I suppose; at least not if you are a fan of rock music. But, if there’s anything right in the rock music world, Choir Vandals will be that band in a few years.
The band formed a mere two years ago, and released their second EP, At Night in October 2014, and it’s truly a captivating collection of songs. Four very diverse offerings, each one quite compelling in its own fantastic way. As a common thread, the lyrics throughout seem to be tinged with a sense of frustration or angst, but the music on each song is quite distinctive. If I had to compare them to any musicians, I’d lean more towards early Cage The Elephant or Arctic Monkeys, but they truly have a style all their own.
The first offering, “Monsters” explodes through the speakers as a distorted, fuzzy rocker powered by Wil McCarthy’s aggressive drums, a dominant bass groove from Josh Cameron and fantastic passionate lyrics. It’s a track that absolutely deserves airplay somewhere, and if you don’t do anything else after reading this review, buy this track (Here’s the link: Monsters – Choir Vandals).
“Medicate” features “early Edge-ian” guitars from Micah Kelleher, although the song sounds absolutely nothing like U2. Austin McCutchen’s vocals are captivating and dominate this fast-paced offering. You’ll find yourself tapping along happily despite the pained, dark lyrics.
The final two tracks dial back the adrenaline a bit, but in doing so, provide the quartet another canvas to display their diverse talents. On “At Night And In The Rain,” I have more than a few pleasant flashbacks to early Replacements garage rock, while “Watch At Night” has more of a dirge feel.
All told, it’s quite the creative EP, and one that I can’t seem to keep out of my ears. Grab the 6131 Records release now and see for yourself – you won’t be disappointed.
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