EP (2015) by the Boise band Leverson makes you forget that the band members are all in high school. There are some shining moments on the album that shows a band with a lot of promise. The vocalist has a Layne Staley vibe and his voice cuts through each song with clarity and purpose. There’s some interesting guitar work throughout the album as well.
The strongest songs on the album are the last three particularly “In My Grave.” Opening with a pedal point guitar figure, the song builds into an almost New Wave grunge song with Alice In Chains-esque harmony vocals. There’s a fantastic bass figure going throughout the song as well that works as an excellent countermelody. “Alexandria’s Lullaby” could serve as the soundtrack to an ‘80s montage with its descending power chords and tapping solo.
“Outro” is an atmospheric instrumental meditation with an arpeggiated guitar figure over controlled feedback. “Intro,” “Crawl Away” and “Vultures” are bold attempts but suffer from some timing issues and failed drum fills. “Intro” starts interestingly but has some flaws before its final section. “Crawl Away” evokes Local H from the mid ‘90s but could be simplified in the arrangement. “Vultures” has some clever guitar parts but could use some balance and dynamics to evoke the emotion of the song.
“Garbage Day” starts with a clip from “Silent Night, Deadly Night 2” that has been used as an Internet meme before dropping into some driving hard rock. The song has several sections with changes in dynamics, which really add to the arrangement of the song. It’s a great way to tie together the verse and chorus and is a good songwriting tool that could be applied in future compositions.
The production on the album is very clear and gives a very honest portrayal of the band’s performance. Overall, the album shows promise for the band. It would be worth cleaning up some of the sections to make the whole package tighter, because when the band shines at the end of the album it’s really spectacular.
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