After taking a hiatus from music for a while, Eastern Iowa-based duo by the name of the vu is back with brand new music on their recent album entitled Stand. Recorded in a front parlor and living room, this EP features the band’s rock-solid grunge style, peppered with the occasional saxophone flavor.
The opener of the album is the record’s title track and begins with high-energy percussion and bluesy guitar and saxophone riffs. Daniel Gallagher provides warbly, yet gravelly and full vocals that accent the rest of the instrumentation and give the song a slightly harsher tone with his emotive grit and angst. “Out of my way” follows in a similar vein with additional alternative rock elements that highlight the versatility of the duo.
Reverb-laced guitar chords scream in the intro of “Blue” before the track delves into a more foundational rock anthem. The following song “Give” features poetic lyrics and a slightly minor tone that brings a seriousness to the atmosphere. Gallagher puts his whole heart into this track, and his unfettered singing and playing draw the listener in.
Arguably the best song on the record “love you baby” might seem like a classic love anthem at first listen, but the variation, subtle techniques and stylistic choices that the vu employ make this song a true masterpiece. The complex soundscape is completed and made cohesive by Daniel’s vocals, and the end result is a truly unique blend of sounds.
As the album comes to an end, “You” features echoing acoustic guitar and abrupt percussion hits, bringing a rather surprising element to the album’s tone. Saxophone solos, guitar riffs, and lightning paced rhythms drive this song to the very end with crescendoing energy, capping off a superb album. As a whole, Stand embodies several musical styles and showcases the serious talent and practice that went into the vu’s latest work.
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