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CD REVIEW: Under the World by Vowws

Vowws are an LA dark-pop duo from Australia, with an album called – Under The World, and it’s a mash up of pop, rock, electronic, western folk and surf music with a cinematic twist. They consist of musos Rizz and Matt, a premiere duo on the scene. Together with engineer and friend Kevin S. McMahon they largely recorded the album at his studio in New York, with the duo taking on a more prominent mixing role later. the album is available on all digital streaming services, and will be available on vinyl on April 20th, via Anti-Language Records in the US and Weyrd Son Records in Europe with a 2-colored vinyl edition.

You don’t hear epic works like this from such humble musicians anymore, and that’s just the first thing that comes to mind after hearing this new album by Vowws, because this youthful outfit aren’t just attractive to younger audiences. They have an old soul about them, but it’s mostly through inflections of the past, instead of copying their influences. They aren’t exactly flashy, but their music has a fashionable flair to it without being obvious about their style. It’s ragged around the edges and smooth as silk in the middle, if that helps describe how they weave their magic together.

They mix dark and light shades within one arrangement, and they also do it per arrangement. You get some straightforward pop and a mesmerizing assortment of other influences in a track, and you get one or the other steady throughout some tracks. “You Never Know” what you’re going to get, as the first track helps prove that point worth making. It deals with both knowing and not knowing what people want. The beats are well-paced, and the vocals are built solidly around it with some smoking baritone guitar riffing as it repeats the chorus with a charming robotic menace.

The second track, “Esseff” is one of the straightforward tracks, which have just as much to dig into as the diverse tracks because they pack as much power in their own way. But this is one of the featured tracks that seem to have it all either way you slice it. They get as complicated as they do simple, and it turns out to be a favorite track for me. But it’s hard telling which is best as the album moves on, but it still draws you in on the first listen. “One Or The Other” falls right in the middle of the previous two achievements with an equally great track that plays remarkably well in unison with the previous title.

“Burn” is one of my picks for the top five selections on the album, because I prefer the mellower side of what Vowws bring to Under The World. It’s a pop perfect track with all the bells and whistles perfectly lined up in a row, and the rough-cut ending just places the icing on the cake. But there’s different strokes for different folks, I just like the way some of them melt more than others, and it also plays out marvelously with the also very smoldering closer “Game” with a healthy showing of similarities which neither might work as well without. High standards are met with no filler at the end of the picturesque sound.

YOU TUBE: https://www.youtube.com/user/VOWSVOWS

by Alan Foster

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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