Release Date: 1/15/08
It's slightly ironic that L.A.'s Summer Darling is set to release their first new recording in almost 4 years right in the middle of winter. When I contacted the band regarding the release of their new EP Health of Others, frontman Ben Heyward joyfully exclaimed "Yes, we finally have new shit!"
Health of Others is one of three internet-only EPs releasing this year with all of them included on a single vinyl LP. Sounds cool, huh? For now, the band gives us this fistful of juicy tunes to whet our appetities. The band used the lengthy interval between releases to refine their brand of moody, catchy, indie rock genious.
The blistering guitar intro on "Barren Womb" has the band immediately pushing the boundaries set by their debut LP I Know You~I Never Knew You. The theme of regret runs straight through this tune with an added dose of reality to make you feel you could be listening in on something you shouldn't.
"Blazing Fire" quickly became my favorite with its incredibly catchy vibe that you won't be able to shake off. Brilliant harmonies by Heather (Ben's wife, and lead vocalist for Kissing Cousins) combine with Ben's sweltering, yet disarming vocal style to create a true indie rock treat.
"Thirsty Desert" slows down the pace a tiny bit, but is no less engaging than its counterparts. The atmospheric, slightly fuzzy anthemic ending is a familiar and welcome page from their debut album.
"Open Grave" may be the most gripping song of the EP with lyrics that really demonstrate Summer Darling's ability and willingness to smash through the facade: (I try really hard to think how others think...I try really hard not to have that next drink, 'cause what would people think?").
Summer Darling is back to deliver the stirring melodies, jarring guitar riffs, and thought-provoking lyrics that fans have been craving. Health of Others showcases the band's ability to rock like the big bands, while achieving a level of credibility others cannot.
~ John M.