Formed in Chicago in late 2011 by Chris Adams, Ivy Dye has been busy in the last two years. They released their debut EP back in July of 2012 (Lyme Times) and have already followed up with their most recent entitled Continuations. Continuations is an impressive collection of songs that will have fans of indie rock excited. The songs here bring together 80’s synth pop elements as well some of the tendencies you might expect from a better then average rock band. With the recent rise in popularity of 80’s synth pop bands you could imagine these guys opening up for someone like Wild Nothing. There are a couple of things that really make this record stand out. First off this was a DIY effort that the band recorded, mixed, and mastered themselves. Not that that in itself should matter but what does matter is that it sounds great. The guitars are crunchy, the drums are powerful, and the vocals are distorted in the best way possible. The other thing about this record is that the riffs and vocals are ridiculously infectious.
I found myself singing along with the first song “Repetition” after the initial spin. When the chorus hits and Adams repeats the lyrics “settle down” as the band provides reverb laced ooohs I was sold. The synths in the song are subtle but effective. They are placed appropriately in the mix and used with care. The good tunes continue with “In Spades” which really works because of the great vocal melodies. Everything fell perfectly in place here - no complaints from my end. The third song on the album “Commonwealth” is an energetic number that has some creative drum work. This song probably wasn’t my favorite out of the bunch but it surely wasn’t a dud. The EP ends with “Battle Trance” which starts with a dreamlike atmosphere before the drums and gritty guitars are introduced. The song had a bit more emotion pouring out of it and left me thoroughly enjoying this band. It was a great way to close the EP. The bottom line is that these guys are good and have a number of endearing qualities that make them even more appealing. I’m looking forward to the full length.
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