Let us first consider how awesome the name Political Party Crashers is for a band, and how fitting it is for this particular four-piece from New Jersey. Their debut effort Everyday is fun, rebellious and mature – which, when it comes to bluesy rock like this, is exactly what the doctor ordered.
You can get a feel for a decent portion of the album with the beginning of “This Busted Heart,” with blaring trumpets kicking off a blues influenced song. Grizzly guitar riffs weave in and out of the forefront of the song, staying slightly behind the scenes most of the time but coming out to play later. The follow-up “Before We Start” has a really fun beginning guitar rhythm, and the bass helps it along nicely. The vocals are so sweet sounding that they are almost pop inspired, but the drums add a touch of ferocity that takes the song to a different level.
I was surprised by the difference in vocals in “How it Ends,” as the change was unexpected after hearing the smoother vocals earlier. Some parts worked way better than others; that said, I enjoyed the lyrical content quite a bit and felt this was a freer, more fun song. Keeping the fun alive, “Holding the High” harkened me back to the Charleston days (which I wasn’t alive for, but still) with a rockabilly twist. I loved the irregular beat.
The next few songs contain some tricks that the band must have been hiding up their sleeves. “Ambiguous Denver” starts off more sultry than the other, more upbeat songs, though the chorus arguably gives the song a hint of levity. The call and response technique fits in perfectly with the overall scheme of this song and the tones balance each other out. “The Sunkeep” has a strikingly familiar riff spruced up with a blues flavor. The chorus rocks pretty hard in the context of this album’s unique sound, and I was taken aback by the incorporation of spoken samples at just the right times. “Cold Feet Running” gallops along, but I like the gravity pull of the heavier sound rushing in then fading away just as quickly as it began. The crashing cymbals and electric guitar in the back really give the song some depth, but everyone really shows their talents here. I was grooving so much that the abrupt ending was like a blow to the face.
“A Man Can Dream” starts off quietly but crescendos so quickly you don’t notice what’s happened until the drums are crashing and you hear the edgier vocals, and you realize you’re in the midst of one of the more raucous moments of the album. The slowed down ending was a wonderful contrast.
Three things about this album stood out most to me and really helped make this an enjoyable listen. First, the musicians are very talented at their craft, and are unafraid to make their sound known whether they are leading a song or simply supporting it. At many moments my attention was drawn to one particular part, and my subsequent listen revealed even more depth than discovered at first. Second, I loved how they opted to introduce different techniques in each song and applied each with nuance. Because of this approach, the album showed a great range of sound and variety between songs though the overall feel remained the same. This leads into and supports the third point: this variety meant that I was caught off guard by much of the album, never quite expecting to hear some of the things I did.
If you’re a fan of classic music made modern, or blues inspired grit rock, definitely give these guys a spin. This album is a really good time!
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