It feels like summer oustide which, for Minneapolis in March, is seriously amazing. So here I am, sitting on my patio, soaking in the rays while I like at the garden which I should probably work on cleaning out. Sure, this is the perfect night to do that but it’s also the perfect night to check out some new music and, let’s be honest, I’d rather do that. So let’s dig into this new self-titled album from Modern Age Relics!
“All I Can Take” gets this record started with the most perfect guitar tone. Within no time, the vocals came in and swept me away into the sun. There’s an almost southern twang to the words but this is far from country. Every word slides to the next with a carefree nature while being drenched in emotion and power. This opening track is soft and somewhat simple but it absolutely packs a punch and had me excited to see what the other nine tracks would bring me.
The instrumentation that kicks off “Good Old Days” caught me within a second. The track starts off with an undeniable sense of power before settling into the indie-pop sound that will surely be an ongoing theme throughout this album. Although this track is still clearly that of Modern Age Relics, there’s more power and more speed in this track which I found absolutely infectious. That power continues into “Surrender” which was instantly a favorite track of mine. There’s something somewhat rushed about this track but somehow the vocals stay cool, calm, and collected. This contrast made this track a super fun listen that I absolutely just got lost in. The bassline at about the minute and a half mark was just the icing on the cake when it came to this track.
Things calm down a bit for “Anybody’s Guess” but the power behind this band does not falter. I’ve been wracking my brain for what band Modern Age Relics sounds like but I’m struggling. Maybe a little Hot Hot Heat, a little Koufax, hell, I honestly don’t know but there’s something super familiar about their sound and style yet something I can’t quite place. The guitar work and rapid bassline in “Anybody’s Guess” absolutely stood out to me but not as much as “Out of Time” did as a full song. There’s something haunting about this track that I really liked. There are pauses and stops throughout this track that seem drastic but definitely add something special to this song.
“Too Late” seems to bring a sense of tenderness to this table. Really, not much changes about this track other than the beat slows ever so slightly giving this track a more somber vibe. I liked this track but I think that Modern Age Relics just does the infectious dancey beats oh so well that I was excited to get on with the album and get more of that vibe. Thankfully, I got that beat back and then some for “What Can You Do?”. This track has an almost darker tone to it that I absolutely loved and made it another favorite track of mine. Again, with the hurried pace of the drums, guitar and bass while the vocals have a more laid back approach, I just can not stress enough how cool this contrast is.
That darkness stretches into “Without You” but you can feel this track starting to lighten up as it plays through. Another just classic Modern Age Relics track, this one is a solid song but seemed to be over in a blink of an eye and, before I knew it, “Fallen Tears” had taken over the soundwaves. This was not a hostile takeover as a smile stretched from ear to ear as soon as “Fallen Tears” started playing. There’s just so much going on throughout this track but it’s all organized and so perfectly placed that nothing ever sounds muddled. This is an element that has been going on throughout this album but I’m just not really realizing the amount of beauty and talent that this shows.
This amazing album comes to a close with the powerful “Five-Four”. Although I’m not one for instrumental songs or even portions of songs, I was sucked in so deeply that I almost didn’t notice that I had lasted the entire track without vocals while smiling from ear to ear. This final track really gives these talented musicians a chance to shine while just solidifying Modern Age Relics’ distinct sound as if to dare you to forget about them any time soon.
This was the perfect soundtrack for my sunny night sent on my front porch and, although I need to do a few more reviews tonight, I’m half tempted to just listen to this album a couple of more times instead.
My Favorite Track(s): “Surrender”; “What Can You Do?”
For Fans Of: Retro Indie-Pop; Familiar But New Sounds; Distinct Style
Mosh-ability: 5 out of 10
What My Cats Thought Of It: Artie slept right next to my desk; Autumn slept upstairs on my bed
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 7 out of 10
My Overall Rating: 7.5 out of 10
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