Rob’s Album Of The Week: Vundabar’s Gawk

VundaBarGawk copyWith a mix of garage rock and jangle pop, Boston’s Vundabar have a uniquely infectious sound that couldn’t be more evident than with their upcoming release, Gawk, the band’s spectacular follow-up to their debut, Antics, that came out in April 2013. Driving chords, fuzzy riffs and a song structure that alternates between emphatic and soft tones are abundant throughout the album. Strikingly original while not going too over the top, Gawk gets weird, but in a cool way that’ll keep you from putting down your headphones.

Vundabar was born from the sense of alienation many of us felt in high school. This feeling spawned the songwriting partnership between Brandon Hagen and Drew McDonald when they were both in their early 20s. In addition to alienation, Gawk deals with identity, perception, detachment and subtle bitterness with absurdist humor accenting the entire album. There are points of jarring energy that’ll hit you during various tracks, but it’s only a part of Vundabar’s creativity.

Read an article, watch TV or just walk down the street, and you’re bound to see something absolutely crazy. It’s a wacky world out there, so take a break with my top tracks off of the Album Of The Week.

I love the grooves of “Oulala” along with the catchy twee pop that brings a sense of smoothness to a track that features a lot of distortion and a few downbeats. Reminiscent of bands like The Cars and The Talking Heads but with a dose of serious edgy rock, “Alien Blues” is adorned with a rhythmic shine that keeps up with the band’s catchy style. “Bust” has some soft tones while going back to the scorching riffs that are all over this quick and energetic number.

On July 17, Vundabar will play a kickass local rock show at The Middle East Upstairs located in Cambridge, Mass, with Pile, Creaturos, Ian and Milk. Grab a copy of Gawk when it’s released on July 24. It’s kind of all over the place and it’s kind of not — compacted weirdness that you’re going to love.

Stream “Oulala”: http://vundabar.bandcamp.com/track/oulala

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