Project K Testing Underway

Project K came into being when the Paper Tulip's Greg K, Popdefect's Nick Scott and Old Hickory's Io Perry met in Los Angeles a couple of years ago. At that point they were all still in other bands (and at least one of them still is), but decided that there was something else they could offer the world, hence the need for Project K. Their debut album, Testing Underway, has a dozen songs that are unapologetic and honest three-piece rock. It reminds me of the criminally underrated Prisonshake, with female backing vocals that are kind of Pixies-like in a Kim Deal sort of way. And if that sounds a little hard to imagine, it is a combination that works incredibly well. They also really do understand the value of brevity; only one song clocks in at over three minutes, with quite a few of the others hovering around two minutes. This gives them just enough time to say what they have to say before shutting up, something that more bands should try. Yet even in that short period of time, they do manage (for the most part) to conjure up something catchy and memorable. Testing Underway is 28 minutes of hook-laden songs that come together for one of the more surprisingly addictive albums of the year. (Bong Load)