Way out West: New Circle

Posted: by The Editor

FFO: Christian Death, Sioux and the Banshees, Bauhaus

New Circle 1

Oakland, California’s New Circle makes music you can dance to. A stark contrast from the commonplace fuzzy emo track to shout along to, or droning shoegaze track to sulk to; New Circle brings something to the market that I’ve been looking for. Reminiscent of early 90s synth pop with more of a guitar focus and a darker tinge, this band is modern day catchy art punk at it’s finest. Vocalist Mikey Rivera’s toneless delivery lays effortlessly over delayed surf-reminiscent instrumentals that waste no time getting you to bob your head along. The band developed greatly from their original starting point. An acoustic driven two track sampler demo, which they released prior to the release of their first real release, displayed a softer more gentle take on the sounds that they eventually grew into. Only one official release in, the band has crafted a distinct sound for themselves, while still playing on a current returning trend in music.

New Circle EP

Their self titled EP New Circle (released on Smoking Room Records) is 4 tracks of dreamy gazed out pop with a drive behind it that keeps it fun. Opening song “Empty” hits us immediately with classic punk drums, then a spacey and distorted play on the familiar surf chords we all hate that we love. Follow up track, “Frolic”, feels more like a forward thinking and reimagined piece by The Smiths if they ever had any fun. Whether or not music can truly even be innovative anymore is an ongoing debate, which in all honesty, will most likely never come to a conclusion. What’s needed now more than ever isn’t something new per-say, but rather something better. That’s New Circle, nothing unlike what you’ve heard before, but better than what you’ve heard before– they’re doing something familiar at a cut above the rest.  


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