Rapid Fire Reviews: Kevin Devine, Hurry & The Exquisites
Posted: by The Editor
October has been another hectic month, with plenty of awesome indie rock releases. Here are reviews of Hurry, Kevin Devine and The Exquisites.
Hurry – Casual Feelings EP
What makes Hurry such an addictive band to listen to is their ability to litter their music with what would be considered pop tendencies but swirl it with indie rock. Their music bounces like one would when they see the love of their life, and honestly that is what the band captures on Casual Feelings. The opening self-titled track is ridiculously catchy because of their light, introspective take on making heartache feel so damned special. The main guitar line is a staunch and thick chord progression, but the delicate vocals weave through them without being too invasive, allowing for the leads that take place to add a particular kind of balance to the rather happy atmosphere. While this EP feels like a slight extension of their earlier release this year, Guided Meditation (with a song even titled that here), it’s just more songs to be excited to hear because Hurry bring that out with their music. I can’t wait to hear this band do more with their sound and release more in the coming years.
Kevin Devine – Instigator
Another year, another release by Kevin Devine. With his hand in so many projects, it’s incredible how consistent the singer has been in releasing new music. Devine’s talent rides through Instigator, finding ways to continue creating upbeat music that gets stuck in your head, mainly through repetition in choruses (like on opener “No Why”). Still, there’s a rich amount of musical progression across the entire LP, ranging from groovy guitar leads, rich tonal qualities and booming drum patterns. Yet, there is something different here, it’s a bit of a beefier release, especially comparing the song “Magic Magnet,” which has a different production style then when it was released, which I don’t really understand. There’s a focus on really fuzzy guitars, which makes the song feel less crisp, more like Kevin Devine is trying to distinguish himself form his other projects in the smallest ways, which I think takes a little away from Instigator. Everything sounds thicker, which isn’t necessarily because the sound is more full, it just has more elements that take away from the true musicality of it. Needless to say, there is nothing wrong with Devine’s particular songwriting ability, just at times I feel it gets stripped a bit by the extremely fuzzy distortion on the explosive parts. “No History” is an absolute gorgeous track until its riddled because of the bass heavy distortion effects. It’s not exactly the most fair way to judge music, but if it’s a bit more complicated to listen to, it’s harder to thoroughly enjoy. Anyways, make sure to listen to the beautiful organ tones in “Guard Your Gates”
The Exquisites – Home
From the first ten seconds, The Exquisites kick and scream to make sure their music sticks its landing. Home opens in a fit of desperation, which is nothing out of the ordinary, but the best quality about The Exquisites is how they ride the rest of Home, well, home. The gritty and wiry vocal performance shines across the entire record, making moments hit with a bit more of a punch because it shows the band really is giving it their all. The group unifies in this ability to take urgency to pivotal points, even small instrumental breaks on “Setting Sun.” It’s rather familiar, causing one to be able to rock out in anyone’s place, whether sitting or standing or even lying down. “Climbing Down At The End Of The Day” showcases a softer The Exquisites, utilizing a horn section to moan along to the pulsing beat, yet still, it sounds unique to them. Right after this song comes to a close, the band kicks back into gear with “Make A Song,” finding creativity even when things seemed to have spiraled a bit off course. This release is thrashing with energy, and one of the better releases to have come out in October.