The Candy Strypers “The Candy Strypers” EP
From Manchester, UK this “band” is really musician Paul Hughes, showcasing his skills with a big emphasis on Brydsian jangle and Rooks-like melodies. “Hymn the Girl” is wonderful single with a cheery chorus and “Sunshine Speakers” has a touch of harmonies, similar to Weezer. “Calling Sarah” has a bit more garage elements, and overall I’d say its an impressive start for Hughes. I look forward to hearing more in the future.
Ican Ican’t “Year of The Stat”
This a pet project of musician Dermot O’Leary, gathering up songs from his other bands (Alanalda, Demostat) after they broke up into a “greatest bits” collection. The work is fine DIY indie rock, “Draw The Line” is a fairly catchy example right off the bat. A bit like Jonathan Coulton,”Little Wings” has little details of bitterness that endear you to the narrative.
Personal pain and apathy come out of the ballad “What If I Told You I’d Die Tomorrow” and the only other standouts here are the light harmonies and sunny melody of “Shortcut Thru’ The Park,” and the Lennonesque revenge tale “Sucked My Will To Live.” O’Leary has the talent and ability to get across many ideas, and overall the theme of loss here is well done. I hope for something more upbeat in future work.