Sunday, November 15, 2009

First Listen: Bryan Scary and the Shredding Tears, Mad Valentines

A shout-out to Tony Shore right up front - without him, I might never have heard Bryan Scary. Tony convinced me to look beyond the strange band name and buy last year's Flight of the Knife album, one of the most insane pop records I've picked up in many a moon. It is also totally awesome.

Mad Valentines isn't exactly the follow-up, but it is an excellent six-song EP full of the same piano-driven prog-pop that Scary and his band do so well. In some ways, Mad Valentines is a single with five b-sides, and that single is leadoff track "Andromeda's Eyes." If you're into mighty musicianship that still retains its sense of tunefulness, you have to hear this. It's super-fast, explosive stuff, with a melody that just keeps coming at you, relentlessly.

Not to slight the other five, but the EP never gets that energetic again. It does, however, remain complex, sweet, poppy and all-around terrific. Closer "The Red Umbrella" is my other favorite, but it's all good. Imagine Supertramp on Jolt Cola, and you have the idea. Listen here. You won't be sorry.

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