It is no secret that Toronto breeds good bands. Maybe it’s something in the air; maybe it’s because good music tends to breed good music. Modern Sands is no exception to this truth as their recently released self-titled debut EP showcases a band who is rooted in gritty shoegaze and jangly pop that hides behind good songs that are executed well. Combining fuzzy guitars and delays pioneered by bands like Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine and later emulated by bands like Deerhunter, Modern Sands uses the same arsenal of sounds to entice the listener. One other thing I would add is that there was an ethereal quality that slightly resembled the band Real Estate. This conceptual idea on this EP reminded me of The Suburbs by “Arcade Fire.” A lot of the topics revolve around the existential dilemma that plagues America’s youth as boredom sets in with nothing to do but get intoxicated. The band says “It takes on themes of intoxication, disillusionment with the concept of love, and the desire to use music and art as a means to escape the mundane realities of lower middle class suburban life.”
The first song entitled “Décor” was probably my favorite. I immediately fell in love with the guitar riff and knew I was in for a treat once I heard the vocals. The guitars’ hooks were really catchy and so were the vocals. I found nothing wrong with the tune. It had everything I look for when I want to hear good indie rock. The second song on the EP “Pistol Burn” was a solid effort. Not as infectious as the first song but still worth your time to listen to. “Rolleiflex” sounded a bit rough in that I think the mix could have sounded a bit better. Nonetheless, the song was catchy and displays a different vocal style not unlike something you might hear from The Magnetic Fields. The album closes with “Loop 13” which is an instrumental track that utilizes crashing guitar chords and builds in momentum and white noise before the bands’ instruments come to a somewhat anti-climatic ending. Modern Sands debut EP is a good listen that showcases a band that I can easily see climbing up the ranks of the elite as they refine their sound.
Divide and Conquer is dedicated to informing the public about the different types of independent music that is available for your listening pleasure as well as giving the artist a professional critique from a seasoned music geek. We review a wide variety of niche genres like experimental, IDM, electronic, ambient, shoegaze and much more.
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