Briefcase – ‘Are the Stars Keeping Score?’ EP


Minneapolis-based band Briefcase present a gripping rock appeal throughout their fourth EP, Are the Stars Keeping Score?. A melodic garage-rock sound persists throughout, embracing inventive structural turns alongside themes “grounded in our struggles as parents, friends, humans,
pet owners, lovers,” per the band.

Kicking off the EP, “Aoerist” struts a gorgeously soaring psych-rock charm. Textured guitar strums lend a hazy engrossment into a subdued vocal lead, escalating with radiance past the one-minute turn into a gripping vocal passion. Halted guitar work thereafter exudes a playful momentum into wordless vocal passion and fuzzy psych-friendly guitar lines. Full of catching structural twists and turns within a meditative rock bliss, “Aeorist” is a thoroughly captivating opener. “Strong” follows with a heavier rock immediacy, with a lower-pitched vocal playfulness escalating seamlessly into a feverish punk-tinged rock ardency; it’s further evidence of the band’s versatility and knack for tonally diverse momentum.

Up next, “Awake Eyes” admits “what you see if what you get, I don’t care,” with the nonchalance reinforced via the confident vocal delivery and garage-rock distorted vigor. “Don’t wake me,” they continue during a serenely impactful sequence, then traversing into an excitable guitar enthusiasm. The stellar EP is capped off by “Lolliscicle,” developing from no-frills rock ardency into an accessible organ-touched hook. The Are the Stars Keeping Score? EP is a stellar showcase in songwriting and structural versatility from Briefcase.

“Strong” and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Emerging Singles’ Spotify playlist.

We discovered this release via MusoSoup, as part of the artist’s promotional campaign.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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