In March of 2005, a teeny tiny Philly-based label called Prison Jazz released an indie rock masterpiece of an album that went greatly unnoticed by the general public. The album was called Hello, Hello and it pulled heavily from early Beatles and Pet Sounds-era Beach Boys. The band was called The A-Sides and if all was right with the world, they’d already be one of the biggest names in indie rock.
Flash forward to 2006. Their commitment to Prison Jazz fulfilled, The A-Sides go back into the studio to write and record an album that will finally break them out of their uber indie shell and send them barreling into the realm of The Little Ones, Birdmonster, Division Day, Cold War Kids, and other bands who have upped the ante this year and made a real name for themselves amongst indie fans the world over.
Silver Storms is that album. The band has rallied with a follow-up to Hello, Hello that shows an impressive step forward. No longer do The A-Sides rely so heavily on their Beach Boys/Beatles-inspired, pop-loving songwriting style. Instead, they’ve branched out and created an impressive collection of songs that are artistic, mature and exceedingly catchy in both lyrical and musical content.
Kicking things off with a 16 second string-heavy intro, aptly titled “Silver Strings,” the dynamic album then flows effortlessly into “Always In Trouble.” At 6 minutes and 33 seconds, the grandiose song swirls and bobs with an ever-growing, rich textured sound that at times is reminiscent of The Walkmen. The down-tempo offering then leaps forward with one of many up-beat, catchy-as-hell tracks, “We’re The Trees.” Bouncy keyboards, simple guitar solos and elastic harmonies make this one my favorites, though there are plenty of “favorites” to choose from – the dark and sinister “Cinematic,” the dynamic “Amazing Graces,” the lengthy-yet-undeniably-compelling “Diamonds” – each cut on this album has something special to offer.
I said it last year and I’ll say it again. This band is ready for nationwide exposure on a large level. Someone please offer these guys a decent record deal so they can make tons of indie kids happy.