Hailing from central PA, Ryan C. King (guitar, bass, vocals, songwriter), Luke Phelps (lead guitar, vocals) and Barry Wohlschlegel (guitar, keyboardist, backup vocals) make up Undecided. They recorded Home Grown and Natural, which is a four-song EP in a barn through a laptop and a two way interface. Unfortunately the sound quality is about what you would expect from that setup. The acoustic guitar sounds frail, without much body and the vocals are in desperate need of a compressor. Fortunately they have written some decent songs that are worth looking past the production value for. The songs are melancholy-filled acoustic numbers that could have been on a split single with Conor Oberst when he was making bedroom recordings.
The album opens with an acoustic guitar strumming chords and warm pads that lay distant in the background.The lyrics are hard to distinguish at points as the vocalist sings “We are all afraid, afraid too do out thing”. “They Did Not Die” is a simple acoustic song where the vocals are the focal point. The song has a decent guitar solo and solid vocal performance but that is about it.
“Far From Here” has vocal harmonies that worked well while the closer “Stay With Me” is the ballad of the EP and is ”based on a past relationship of a close friend leaving and moving far from home.”
It is a shame that a decent EP like this is plagued with so many production issues. They adversely affect the songs and an engineer with decent chops could bring these songs to a better place. However the songs themselves are decent and display that the band does have some chemistry. While I recommend you give this EP a listen I can't help but hope there are a number of improvements that will happen on their next effort.
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