Sunday, December 14, 2014


As the year has progressed, several great singles and EPs have been released for which I have written reviews or should have written reviews.  I’ve waited for many of these bands to go ahead and release new full length albums before offering my thoughts, but several have not yet materialized.  So, over the next week or two, I hope to share my enthusiasm for some great singles that have come along during 2014 that I’ve neglected to share.

“Jumprope” 7” EP

Shelflife Records just keeps finding really fun pop music!  Gingerlys is a new New York band that takes the beautiful and dreamy songs of early Shelflife legends like Arrogants and Brittle Stars and infuses them with a dose of speed and adrenaline.  They’ve made a perfect single for the summer time.

“Jumprope” jumps right in with some frenetic strumming guitar, and a simple and warming keyboard line that evokes the Brittle Stars comparison, and then Maria Garnica’s breathy vocals (reminding of Arrogrants’ Jana Heller) come along tying the proceedings together magically.  It isn’t until the absolutely dreamy chorus – a repeated series of “ahs” and “uh-huhs” – that the song goes to the stratospheric.  It’s a compact and perfect song to hum on a beautiful stroll in the sunshine.  I’m not sure what’s going on inside the wall of noise that is the fast “Summer Cramps,” but it’s enticing.  The songs stumbles forward at a rapid pace and there’s so much going on with the layers of sounds (it almost sounds like a horn section buried deep underneath the guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, and vocals), but the clarity of the straight forward keyboard melody ties the song together to give it a memorable quality beyond the fun urgency of the performance.

The B-side opens with another quick burner in “Better Hearts.”  Garnica punctuates every short line of each verse with a “you don’t know me” line that will get stuck in your head, while guitarists Matt Richards and Colin O’Neill weave together surprisingly intricate intertwining melodies together.  This song is where drummer Brian Alvarez and bassist Kevin Doxsey really shine.  Alvarez’s stunning rapid fire drum rolls, punctuated tightly by Doxsey’s rolling bass grand throughout the song are amazing!  Again, there’s a lot going on in the mix, but its fun to focus on the many different sounds coming out of these five players.   The closing “Set You Off” comes on like an airy breeze, or a long relaxing exhale.  Garmica’s cooing vocals perfectly match with her keyboard atmospherics and the jangly guitars.

What an excellent introduction!  I sure hope that there’s more music to come - maybe for next summer?

 Gingerlys "Jumprope"

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