Bi-Coastal genre-benders FAULKNER are back with a solid 10 track LP. The songs are great and all in their own way.
This is a band that specialize in really diverse music. You can hear multiple influences throughout this record; from Rancid to Elton John and everything in between.
There’s more than one catchy song that is guaranteed to be stuck in your head.
The instrumentation is one of the best things about PARIAHS. The band manage to utilize things like piano to it’s fullest potential without overtaking an entire song.
The engineering on this record is beautiful. Every track sounds immaculate, you can hear every facet of the music which makes this release all that much more impressive.
“Revolutionary”– Pulsing heavy synth brings you in only to surprise you with the sounds of steel drums. The beat settles into something Robert DeLong- “Long Way Down”– esque/reggae influenced.
“Rebels in the distance, the world is our stage”
“Hot Streak”– This is the song that came across my desk back in October. It definitely made me stop what I was doing. This was something familiar yet new. It reminded me of Phoenix/The Killers. I heard the 80’s synth pop influence immediately and didn’t look back.
“NY Anthem”– “Go to New York, New York….can take over the world”. The guitar plucks play perfectly off of a steady piano/keyboard. Get the mental image of the vocalist singing in front of a giant piano. RZA brings some unexpected aggression and a really solid verse to an already great song.
“Halo Me”– I was surprised by this future bass-y intro. It feels almost too familiar, like a Chainsmokers track…until those snares kick in! FAULKNER’s aptitude for putting their twist on popular sounds is what has solidified their spot in the industry.
“Waters Are a Rising”– The intro to this track is probably my least favorite on the record. It’s not a bad song overall, it just seems like perhaps an afterthought to fill space. The verse (aggressive/dark) and chorus/bridge (light, poppy) sections just seem a bit disjointed to me. Overall, the song fits on the record, it just isn’t a stand alone track for me.
“Street Axioms”– The screeching guitar intro reminds me of straight-forward punk bands like The Thermals. The influence of punk music is clear within Faulkner’s catalogue, perhaps no more obviously than here.
“I’m Stoned”– The punk influence shines bright once again. This is the track that makes you want to sing alone while you spill your beer.
“Keep Your Enemies Closer”– This track features Royce 5’9”. It definitely feels like one of the darker songs on the record. Royce’s verse is a refreshing splash of hip-hop influence in a predominately synth/dance/pop heavy record.
“Hustle Everything”– The piano and vocals harmonize perfectly. This is another track that to me, sounds like a possible single.
“Molly”– I think the title of the track speaks for itself. Here’s your more upbeat, poppy, sing along track. This is the perfect way to end an album.
LISTEN TO FAULKNER’S PARIAHS BELOW