Post-rock, indie band Bars of Gold are based in Detroit, and due to release their second album SHELTERS on 12th April. With the band’s new addition of 4th guitarist John Gaviglio this album brings another layer to their already guitar-focused sound, with the effect creating an experimental mixing bowl of genres throughout their music.
The LP’s first song Worthless Chorus has as much of a punk vibe to it as it’s track title. Punchy riffs paired against the howling vocals of lead singer Marc Paffi are strategically balanced with heavier drum placements. The effect is a simple yet interesting back-and-forth of every instrument to listen to, almost highlighting each member’s musical strengths. A worthy introduction of the band as a collective, and overall its a decent record for the band, especially has an opening track. Next on the album, Atlantic City has a strong intro to start, definitely a stand out record early on that brings out more emo tones that Paffi and drummer Brandon Moss channelled back when they were members of band Bear vs. Shark.
This is swiftly followed by tracks $20 and Sometimes, both of which are their latest single releases along with Atlantic City. Sometimes is worth a listen as it takes the album to a new dimension expressing feelings of franticness and anxiety, themes that follow throughout the LP. It’s more easy-listening in comparison to the rest of the tracks, less experimentation has gone into it and it could certainly be a single composed for radio plays.The creativity of the tracks is then recovered after this. Beans has a very nice mix of guitar melodies which paired against Paffi’s pace of vocals works, with some contrast of slow tempo breaths of keyboard to break up the song. The record goes faster with Madonna, a punk vibes that correlates with tracks from earlier on, but also contrasts immediately with Montana which is a lot more smooth and slow.
Overall, SHELTERS make for an odd listen to say the least. Its executed well as it almost makes for an uncomfortable listen through arrangement and vocals to convey the motions of anxiety. The quirkiness of the LP, and the band themselves, makes it all that more enticing. A dynamic experimental sound with plenty of diversity in genre influences.