Look What You Did! is the second full-length release for the Pacific Northwest-based quartet My Eyes Shut. Guitarists Alexandre Duccini and Seth Townsend-Tyers are (separately) the groups’ lyricists; each sings the songs he’s penned. Emrys Harper (bass) and Erik Martin (drums) round out the quartet; Townsend-Tyers throws some keyboards onto two tracks.
My Eyes Shut cite a number of influences for their music, including “post-punk, industrial, hardcore, and shoegaze.” That’s all here. Generally, the guitars are distorted and the grooves are heavy with occasional forays into odd meter or unexpected accents. While that’s the main feel, the band does incorporate some softer parts as a nice contrast. There’s even a few ‘60s-surf-guitar sections in there!
A two-lead-singer group is a tough thing to pull off, especially as the setup naturally invites a comparison between the two vocalists. On Look What You Did!, Townsend-Tyers’ vocal work shines a little brighter. His voice cuts through the band’s dense sound, and the songs he sings have more melody--particularly the soaring lines in “It Comes And It Goes.” My favorite of his tracks was “Way Out West” which starts with a riff-y, new wave feel--almost like a Bowie track, musically--before descending into a darker, heavier feel with buried, chanty vocals over a long ending.
That’s not to say that Duccini is a slouch with the mic. His rough-edged, anger-tinged delivery clearly communicates the emotion in his lyrics. It works very well on “A Father, A Figure,” for instance.
The band has some very inventive moments throughout Look What You Did! The bluesy “Inventing Authentic” features a nice contrast between staccato and swoopy, fuzzy guitar parts. On “Revolver,” the band switches easily between pretty verses and harder choruses. Harper’s melodic bass work on “A Father, A Figure” was a particular highlight.
My Eyes Shut has done some good work here. I’d like to see them expand their vocal melodies on their next release, and tighten up some of the longer arrangements. Keep going, guys!
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