I have this bad habit of falling in love with a band when I see them live but never really taking the time to listen to their music on recordings. It’s not that I don’t want to, more that when I’m not at a concert I’m lost in a haze of nostalgia with my 2007 Warped Tour playlist. One of my many New Year’s Resolutions was to change that so why not start with a band that I absolutely fell head over heels for the first time I saw them live- Static Panic.
Their ‘Chrome’ EP starts off with the super funky and dancey track “Fluid Funk Butter Sweet”. I mean, that song title pretty much says it all. A little Prince, keytar, and a whole lot of attitude, this song was the absolute perfect song to kick this EP off with. It sets the stage for a set of six songs that are sure to get you up and moving even if you’re just sitting at home alone with your cats. The infectious beat of “Fluid Funk Butter Sweet” definitely had me jamming around in my chair as I thought about what to write but honestly, like the rest of this release, it would be so much easier for you to just listen than for me to tell you how I danced around like an idiot in my apartment while putting laundry away and listening to this.
Within the first line of lyrics, “The Crazy Thing” just screams Prince. Hailing from Minnesota, it definitely makes sense that Static Panic has such a strong Prince influence but, when you realize just how young the members are, the more impressive it becomes. I have seen these guys a couple of times before and for some reason this is one of those songs that always got stuck in my head after watching them. Maybe it’s the infectious yet simple drum pattern or the bumpy synth sound and the way vocalist Ro’s voice dances so easily over all of the instrumentation. It’s seductive without being overly sexy (okay, it’s pretty sexy) and dancey without being over the top obnoxious with heavy dance beats. Again, just listen and try to sit still while doing say. I’d be willing to bet you can’t do it.
You know what, while you’re at it, try to stay still while listening to “Feel It” because, let me tell you, it had me “feelin’ it!” (See what I did there?!) With a more modern feel than the 80’s vibe that “The Crazy Thing” seemed to possess, the beginning almost sounds like Chromeo but then the vocals change everything. Almost a reggae style to the way each note is approached with an undeniable sense of staccato which makes it sound like there’s a whole other singer involved other than Ro. Almost a bit dancehall meets EDM meets dubstep all wrapped up with a bow of funk, this song comes off as one of the best work out songs I have ever heard and I can’t wait to share it with my spin class (which is full of old men who are content with listening to LMFAO and Pitbull every time we have class so this could be interesting). The vocals are sparse in this song but I love that. It gives you a chance to just let all of the talent in this band sink in.
“Anthem of the Lost” is definitely still upbeat and makes you want to move but there’s this almost softness to it. The tempo drops down and the heavy synths have a sense of passion in them instead of just pure fun. The reverb that’s set on the vocals brings a sound that just screams emotion. The cover of this EP is this robot type creature that seems to be falling through space and that’s exactly what this song sounds like. Moving through layers of sound and emotions, “Anthem of the Lost” is definitely a stand out track on this six song release.
The next track “Lose You To The Night” seems to be the happy medium between the Prince infused 80’s dance tracks and the poppy and powerful feeling of “Anthony of the Lost”. The crazy thing about this song is that I could hear it on top 40 radio but could also hear it being played in an alternative dance night after a Panic at the Disco song. Truly a chameleon, this song can be taken so many different ways but, like the rest of this EP, it makes you dance whether you want it to or not. “Lose You To The Night” definitely features Ro’s vocal talent and the way his voice can be so ridiculously smooth while doing some of the most jagged runs you’ve ever heard.
Unfortunately this EP is only six songs and we are already at the final track “Bottle to Brain”. Back to the 80’s infused music that I never knew needed to be revived until I was introduced to Static Panic, “Bottle to Brain” takes the tempo down a little bit. Instead of dancing around like an idiot, I found myself just swaying in my chair with a giant smile on my face. Throughout this album I was able to picture the band on an imaginary stage in my mind and I honestly think that’s just because their sound is truly unique and has stuck with me since the first time I stumbled into their show. This song is one of those days where I just closed my eyes and it was like I was standing in the 7th Street Entry watching them with a drink in my hand and my friends by my side.
If you’re having a rough day or just need to get out of a funk, this is definitely the album for you. The six songs move almost too fast but it never hurt anyone to listen to the same six songs over and over and over and over again…. did it? I’ll let you know when I finally find the will power to listen to something else.
My Favorite Track(s): “The Crazy Thing”
Chances Of Getting A Noise Complaint While Listening To In An Apartment: 7 out of 10
Dance-ability: 10 out of 10
What My Cats Thought Of It: Artemis laid slept in the kitchen; Autumn stared out the window waiting for snowmageddon
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 9.7 out of 10 (Trick question–I know these guys are amazing live)
My Overall Rating: 4.8 out of 5
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