The Kyle Sowashes - Yeah Buddy!
Record Label: We Want Action Records
Release Date: April 1, 2008
If The Kyle Sowashes played their latest release Yeah Buddy! beside any one of Elvis Costello’s albums, it would feel like they were looking in the mirror, only The Kyle Sowashes are a younger band of Costellos. Their folk rock sensibilities and emotive vocal inflections are all in the same family. The Kyle Sowashes, fronted by Kyle Sowash on lead vocals and guitar, describe themselves on their website as a second coming of indie rock’s golden age honed by ‘90s bands like Guided by Voices and Superchunk. The album is not exactly cut-out melodies of Guided by Voices and Superchunk, but The Kyle Sowashes certainly identify themselves with where these artists were coming from with a desire to deliver folk music that has the power of rock-jets to propel it. The chord progressions are inventive, adhering to a garage band mentality liken to Dinosaur Jr., and Sowashes’ vocals press grooves into the melodies which make the lyrics stick in the listener’s mind. The band’s genesis of new ideas rooted in the music of their musical influences is admirable.
The tapping keyboards of “Your Band Flaked Out on Me” are combined with trickles of high pitched chimes and light tambourine jangles, making this song particularly unique on the album, which is mostly covered in rock guitars in pulsating rhythms. The string arrangements on “Free Ride Reprise” also deliver a unique texturing into the medley with softly winged harmonies. The reprise track follows the folk rock version of “Free Ride” which fires off into widespread sparks. The track “Sharpshooter” is one of the band’s best selections on the album, starting off with a mellow tempo and then building into a plume of chord movements tightened in a rock-vise. Tracks like “Oh the Shame” and “My Resume” idle at folk rock speeds, whereas “Only Time Will Tell” has an alternative pop modulation. The softer tempos of “Tusk” and “Output Bin” are shaded in evenly versed drum stokes and low-lit guitar chords producing a mood that feels sore about the current situation presented in the lyrics. The words ruminate, “It’s just another noisy night in this hauled over college town / The streets are boarded up in cups and a part of me wants to pick them up / If I weren’t so drunk right now maybe I’d have made a splash / But after talking it over with Justin / We both agree that it would not last.”
Besides Sowash, The Kyle Sowashesis are composed of Dan Bandman on drums, Justin Hemminger on guitar and backup vocals, Brian Freshour on bass, and Sean Gardner on keyboards, tambourine, and backup vocals. They are from Columbus, Ohio which brings a down-home feel and an urbanite quickness to their songs. Prior to the forming the quintet, Sowash belonged to another Ohio-based band called Tom Foolery and the Mistakes. The Kyle Sowashes have created a rock ‘n’ roll fantasy with their latest release Yeah Buddy!, a place where they can go wild and channel all of their emotions into songs, and they really let it rip on this album.