The Slang – self-titled

By Ryan G

The Slang has something of a throwback sound that I can’t quick pinpoint off the top of my head. Perhaps a 90s alt rock sound? In any case, what this band is doing is different than what most of their peers are putting out these days – indie rock with electronic elements or drenched in reverb.

This project I get the impression is more or less the baby of singer John Bobo – a project he has nursed for years, culminating in the release of this EP. They put on an impressive live show at the third ever Worst Kept Secret Fest – something of an anomaly next to all of the psychedelic and garage rock acts performing that day.

The Slang is best known as a duo, although they have performed both as a solo act (John) and as a trio in the past. While the magic of a studio undoubtedly has a little to do with this, it cannot be understated how huge this record sounds. The band’s target audience is likely a slightly older crowd – but should appeal to most age groups. Bands like Morning Parade and Jimmy Eat World (their more recent albums) come to mind.

The vocals do seem a little lackluster at first, but any cynicism was quickly proven wrong on my part. This happened in two ways – the singing does complement the music well (something the band has figured out in their longevity) and John Bobo just have the ability to whip out the falsetto in key moments.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdzbML-CMac[/youtube]

You won’t find any over the top guitar or drum work here. The music just sort of envelops you – in a way that simultaneously therapeutic and energetic. Neither does the music progress to a full on “wall of sound” – sludge metal or shoegaze style. It finds its happy medium and stays there. Every song does have its huge moment. The reason I haven’t taken the time to elaborate on each particular song is that I feel like I could say the same thing about each song. Which isn’t a bad thing nor formulaic – the band knows what works and has honed those characteristics down to a “T.” Actually I will point out one thing about a song – the grungy solo in “Find a Way” is pretty  badass.

The Slang have released a dark horse EP of 2014 and people need to start paying attention.

Score: 4/5

The Slang is on Facebook. Buy the record here.

 

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