Distant Creatures: Snares In Safe Harbors (self-released, 2017)

November 24, 2017 at 9:27 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Distant Creatures: Snares In Safe Harbors

Former WCBN DJ Chris Matthews sings and plays several instruments in this dream pop quintet based in Virginia. Their music is a lush mixture of electric and acoustic guitars, strings, synths, and vocals which aren’t rendered unintelligible by effects. The songs are generally uptempo and akin to classic indie pop (Sarah Records, et al) rather than zoned-out psych-rock, so that while they certainly explore the possibilities of highly textural arrangements, there’s no shortage of songcraft. The strings add a stroke of elegance to songs like “Unsure” and “In Real Life”. “Low Spirits”, an urgent, driving tune which seems to be about dealing with stress, depression, and the heaviness of life, reappears here after being included on their debut cassingle last year, and it still sounds magnificent. “Faith” is a bit closer to dark post-punk, with a heavier bass guitar sound and pounding drums. “Pause For Epiphany” is a bit more of a perky, playfully offbeat alternative rock song with some haunting synth sounds sprouting out on occasion. “Song For No Name” is a bit darker, more crushing, and more Chelsea Wolfe-like. CD and digital album available on Bandcamp.

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