by Thomas Bedward October 08, 2017
You wont find much of a history behind Airwaves Spectacular, having only formed in March of this very year, but what you will find is passion, enthusiasm, and will to create. A trio of Cyrus Keefer, Kayla Rae, and Chris Tolentino, they formed Airwaves Spectacular in Baltimore after years spent in other projects.
An alternative pop and modern rock band at heart, they have already notched up comparisons to Muse, Evanescence, and the Human League while exploring their sound. Now they’ve put a bold step forward by releasing their debut, self-titled album, bringing their 80’s influenced sound to full fruition. A fifteen track release, the debut collection delivers the core components of Airwaves Spectacular’s sound, starting with spiralling electronic beats that move into more inspired rock sounds and a dazzling mix of spoken and sung vocals.
Opening with ‘Code Blue’, the album introduces the band as forward-thinking and wonderfully innovative. Retro sounds clad in a static break away to give ‘Heart Like Hot Lungs’ form, a droning piece that hints at a subtle vocal-driven melody that’s cut by anthemic, but staggering musical directions, while ‘Wait For It’ dives back into the electronic-tinged creation that the band seem to revel in.
It’s an ambitious mix, and across the fifteen tracks, there are definite hits and some ebbing misses. Tracks like ‘Reckless Vultures’ and ‘Dead Words on Deaf Ears’ play for cinematic atmospherics, while ‘I Said Mean It’ lingers somewhere between poetry and cliché, and the eponymous, penultimate piece of ‘Airwaves Spectacular’ drives towards heights that the chorus just doesn’t seem to meet. Where there is dark through, there is also blinding light, and where the album does excel is in piecing together a patchwork of genres into the band’s own vision, forming their own sound from a maelstrom of other unique worlds.
By their nature though, debut’s are generally flawed, with band’s first starting to approach their sound and find a path. Airwaves Spectacular are no exception, but considering the young age of the band, and the energy and passion of the members, it’s easy to see them bringing out a sophomore record that will astound and entertain in equal measure.
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