In an industry mired in dime-a-dozen bands and MySpace insta-lebrities, today’s bands tend to suffer from the same symptoms of overzealous promotion, ultimately leading to Ã¼ber-entitlement and general gloating. Yet despite the mighty roar of the media machines behind these bands, a large majority can hardly muster a meow when finally thrust into the spotlight.
Expecting The Gadsdens to fare no differently, I moseyed over to their MySpace with a firm expectation of mediocrity.
Well, I was wrong*. Much to my surprise, The Gadsdens provide a much needed breath of fresh air in a landscape dominated by “average,” blending together the breezy sounds of some of the finer purveyors of contemporary pop, including Take That, Imogen Heap, and even a hint of Vanessa Carlton.
Though there are subtle suggestions of blues and folk-inspired influence sprinkled throughout, the majority of The Gadsdens’ collection is largely pop-based. And unlike so many bands that claim to intentionally “pay homage” to the greater pop moments of the ’80’s and ’90’s in an obnoxious, tongue-in-cheek manner, The Gadsdens carry yesterday’s elements into their music in a wonderfully unpretentious manner.
I absolutely adore the lead singer’s vocals, which seemingly glide through the scales quite effortlessly on tracks like the sweetly tender “Heartbreaker.” Other tracks, like the title track from their upcoming EP, “The Sailor Song” strike me as a brighter rendition of The Decemberists and a bit of ’90’s female singer-songwriter, a la Natalie Merchant.
Though I’m not going to speak for the group, I’m willing to bet that their genuine sound stems from a genuine respect for pop–The group’s blog certainly seems to suggest this influence. (Lykke Li, Siobhan Donaghy, The Cardigans, and Grace Jones for starters.)
The group will be releasing the Sailor Song EP on March 23, a collection of 5 tracks produced by Sean McGhee. Though the band have supported Temposhark on tour, been named as one of the best unsigned acts by NME, and played on BBC’s Radio 6, the band is still bubbling under. Let’s change that, shall we?
Easy, breezy, beautiful…It’s no longer just a phrase for make-up, folks.
The Sailor Song EP will be available digitally on iTunes on March 23. For more from The Gadsdens, click here.
*I really should have known better, considering my ever-reliable blogger buddy XO named The Gadsdens’ “Sailor Song” as one of his Top Tracks of ’08.