Hailing from Boston Massachusetts Drab is a female fronted three piece that plays discordant indie pop. The music on Bird is combination of distorted guitar, bass and drums and lies somewhere in between Ex Hex and Veruca Salt. Musically, the EP can sometimes be creatively engaging if sparse. The female vocals are stripped and attractive despite the lack of technical approach.
Toward the latter portion of the album specifically on “Spare Me” we get to hear a single-worthy sound or at least it’s as catchy as this band gets. They pride themselves on discordance, acting like a roadblock from anything sounding too easy to swallow. The guitar often has an off-putting overtone to it thanks to the heavy use of minor 2nds and other jarring intervals.
“Woe Is You, Woe Is Me” has some strong guitar and a kind of Jimi Hendrix grunge to it. The interlude of upper register melody could probably be better placed because it robs the groove of really developing in the initial introduction. To my appreciation, the second coming was given appropriate room and it was an engraining musical moment. Alas, there just wasn’t that many as a whole, putting this album at risk of being lost in the scene.
"Save it for the firing squad" starts with a subtle guitar that is combined with attractive female vocals. The song builds some momentum but never feels like it completely takes off with energy. Nonetheless, a solid song. They close with "Valley of the underdog" which is another highlight on par with "Spare". The guitar parts here are inventive and especially enjoyed the wall of distortion they build towards the end of the song.
Drab can sometimes feel drab. In other words, Bird demonstrates their appeal to the artistically mundane by sometimes forgetting the flavor of grunge rock and throwing in an dollop of estranged contemporary. Still with me? Aspiring garage acts, female-led or not, this is a stepping stone piece for the band. I’m sure this group is working and evolving their sound all while opening up to options in the studio. Their other release should definitely be explored. Something tells me the best is still yet to come and I hear some of it on Unicorn. So there’s that.
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