Papermaps – s/t

Band: Papermaps
Album: Papermaps

Papermaps is set to release their debut album under this moniker, though you may already be familiar with the band, formerly known as EX~PO. The structure of the band is still the same, with Dean Marino fronting the band alongside Wendy Leung (keys, vocals), Todd Harrison (bass, synth) and Bobby Lee (drums). Together, they’ve put together a great collection of songs.

Kicking off with “Angela,” the album already grabs the listener’s attention. The power-pop continues with “Reunion” and “Can’t Make a Living.” In the latter song, as Marino sings, “Guitar’s alright, but you can’t make a living,” he seems to be singing an indie musician’s anthem. Brit rock influences manifest with synth-heavy “Complicate Things,” while “Exit” is a rockin’ tune. There’s an undeniable swagger to Marino’s vocals that’s at the forefront of the upbeat tunes, alongside bright sounding synths and keys, all tied with frenetic guitar work.

As the last three songs of the album are slower, the pace changes with “You Glided Down,” followed by “Wishful Thinker,” with heartfelt lyrics and vocals that tug at the listener’s heartstrings. The album ends with “You Are My Gallows,” a song that carries a bit of a classic feel, with a warmth from the group chanted vocals. The 10 songs comprising Papermaps’ self-titled release are all varied yet flow together nicely, no doubt partly due to Marino’s experience co-heading up Chemical Sound. It’s an album that ties together different influences, while remaining fresh with a defined sense of self.

Papermaps will be available April 19th via Sparks/EMI. The band will also be celebrating the release at Sneaky Dee’s on April 29th. Be sure to check them out then!


Categories: Recorded


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