24 August 2011

Brave Bird - ready or not ep (2010) & it's my pride that i swallow (2011)

From Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, supposed to be one more of these local emo/punk/twinkle bands, but this EP proves they are so much more than that.

At first approach they doesn't sound so different from resurgence emo bands, such as Algernon Cadwallader or Dads, but as soon as you start to dig below you realize they much more belong the category of Penpal, Coate or Mountains for Clouds.

Through this ep I think about American Football, Dinosaur Jr, Van Pelt, (early) Bright Eyes and even Seam. One of their songs is just beyond category, "Healthy", fucking brilliant and groundbreaking, most of the other ones are just a step behind.

But it's imperfect, the mastering of levels could have give them a more perfect balance, it's mostly the voice of the screamer which is saturating at times, overlooking the finesse of the songs even if it is a strong source or fever and intensity.

First thing to notice, the guitarist is an erudite, pinpointing most of what I admir(ed) in the emo/indie scene about this instrument, his versatility linked to a coherent hypersensitivity is a fulfilling pleasure from first note to the last one, no matter which indie style he is playing.

Secondly, the vocalist which is not screaming but singing, often hits the right vibe even if imperfect and somewhat adolescent sounding. The icing on the cake is when the guitar and these vocals have some room together.
So Brave Bird is generating a mix of strong enthusiasm and recurring frustration for me and only "Healthy" and "It's my pride that I swallow" have enough strength to reach a balance which turns the screamo part into something bearable. But there are really good parts in other songs such as "Tired Enough", "See you next year" or "Scared Enough"but it is followed or preceded by ruining parts with screamo whiny vocals too much in the forefront. When they are just used as accents in the background or at a more convenient level in the mix they even have an important role, but too much and too much and I feel close to allergy.

Hopes are high and anyways I'm already addicted, even if I complain.

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