Spiral Beach Spiral Beach

Spiral Beach Spiral Beach
One out of every three press bios contains the phrase, "quirky, neurotic, Talking Heads-inspired pop.” Most of the bands these bios describe are either mediocre pop bands with exceptionally annoying lead singers, or emo bands (because emo bands get every single tag under the sun except "emo”). But surprise, surprise, just like in Cinderella, Spiral Beach come out of nowhere and respectably fit the bill (and not in an irritating, Clap Your Hands blah blah sort of way). To top that off, they’re very young, and they come right out of Toronto. Spiral Beach’s debut full-length starts strong and strays not thereafter, laying one cutting melody after another, staying on cue, staying in tune, and hopping with energy. They’re "quirky,” but they know that being quirky doesn’t have to involve pretending not to know what you’re doing — tomfoolery is secondary to good songwriting, and it’s clear that Spiral Beach have this down to a maxim. The vocals are memorable without resorting to kooky theatrics, and the songs are virulently catchy without eluding pop appeal. The new wave throwbacks are so well-whipped into the mix that it doesn’t feel right to namedrop their obvious influences (Talking Heads, Devo, oops, I did it), because it places Spiral Beach in the same league as so many bands who draw the same comparisons, but will never get it so right. Formulaic, sure, but when artists get a formula down so well and so fast you know that their future holds brilliance — so get into it now before they release their double-album song cycle that takes 20 years for audiences to understand. (Independent)