I’m a bit of a sucker for bands that do things a little differently with their EP’s or albums. If a band is willing to put in that little bit more effort to make the release feel like more than just a collection of radio-ready songs, I believe that makes the distinction between fame-hungry upstarts and musicians who are respectful of the art. Calgaris are definitely the latter.
Latest EP ‘I’ opens as grippingly bizarre as you could imagine. ‘Knots’ is a piece of atmospheric ambience that immediately draws you in, purely out of interest. What kind of music will this evolve into? Coming in at just over a minute long, ‘Knots’ serves wholly as a dreampop hook that will also ease you into the EP. Think of it a bit like the music that a band walk onstage to.
Then the EP really kicks in. ‘APLT’ is an indie-rock stomper with a refrain that feels like an alternate take on You Me At Six. The verses are indie through-and-through, but the chorus explodes out as if Josh Franceschi decided “screw this, let’s go dance-rock”. And it works, very well.
‘Sugar’ follows in a similar vein, but with much more an alt-rock edge. And the overdriven guitars, combined with the pounding rhythm section, provide the framework for a piece that can only be described as ferociously jaunty. It burns a path which is followed by ‘Holy Books’, a gentle piano-led ballad that brings the EP to a soft close. It’s on the opposite end of the spectrum to its predecessor, which shows yet another shade of the band. It’s almost like a gentler version of The 1975’s ‘Robbers’.
And at the end of listening, the EP has gone full circle: from soft ambient opening to gentle piano close. You could not ask for a better release than this; it’s a fulfilling experience, and indie fans will definitely want to get listening to this EP. It’s a fantastic release from a band set for bigger things.