I read the one sheet included in Backnbloom’s first EP before I started listening to their music. I was intrigued by the fact that Lori Steele, the lead singer, also plays electric violin because it’s not really something I run across all the time. It’s also a two-person operation with Lori and her band mate Alberto – something else that I like running across. However, I found myself disagreeing with the descriptions listed about each of the four songs as I actually started playing the disc.
The one sheet describes most of the songs as catchy, haunting, very upbeat or perfect for dancing. A melody has to be extremely powerful in my experience to be described as haunting and I do agree that the songs are upbeat but I didn’t really find anything haunting about the vocals or melodies. “Am I Pretty,” the second song on the EP, does have an opening violin solo that is really entrancing. It sets the song up to be sort of serene and melancholy but as soon as the vocals begin it loses that quality and thus the beautiful haunted feel that the song could have had disappears.
All of the songs have bits and pieces that are really enticing such as the openings to “Hollywood Blvd.,” “Am I Pretty” and “New September.“ The songs all lead with outer-space-like electronic sounds, some pretty cool drum beats and the aforementioned violin solo. At the same time though, bits and pieces of the EP felt like songs I had heard before and I couldn’t really get into them towards the middle to end.
The songs definitely have potential and do contain some really unique components but I didn’t get the urge to play the songs over and over again. The elements of excitement and distinctive sounds were just missing for me.
Give these tracks a listen: “Am I Pretty,“ “Hollywood Blvd.“
– Elena Buckley