So the local music spotlight was apparently a big hit. I’ll start reviewing more local music in the future.
In the meantime I’d like to write about power pop band Nada Surf. While the band did recently release a brand new record this year (2016) the selection for today’s review is their smash hit first album High/Low. The album gained the band notoriety for the semi-spoken word single “Popular” a diatribe on dating in high school that pouts and cries over the unfairness of heartbreak in an ironic kind of way. Ultimately the fact that it was a rock song gave the hit a meta quality of existentially lingering on what it takes to be popular, and how fickle even lovers can be in the long run. Don’t sleep on them though or write them off as a one hit wonder. Actually this album has layers and layers of great stuff. Recorded over 19 days culling from years of work the three piece musical ensemble put together a cohesive and complete music experience. For example, “The Plan” introduces Matthew Caws flawed but emotional vocal over top a jutting bass line that never gives up. The high energy bass guitar drives through the turns and corners of the power pop prescription for the nineties grunge movement only mixed with heavy punk influences. The song writing over the course of their career has and continues to amaze, but on High/low you can find great pop rock examples such as “tree house” a fun and up beat song that shows off a kicking drum beat that drives away with an almost Weezer like reckless abandon. Nada Surf is currently on tour and will be visiting the 930 club in DC on June 1st. Cognizant Machine is excited about this show and will try its best to organize a trip to listen to the guys.