Shut Out The Sky (EP)

Victor Bravo

Independent release, 2006

REVIEW BY: Melanie Love


Being completely easily amused, there’s nothing I love more than getting mail (although that could be because I don’t get bills yet); of course, packages from the Vault blow college solicitations or a report card right out of the water.

Even better? When what shows up on my porch becomes an instant favorite, like my latest discovery, Victor Bravo (made up of lead singer/guitarist Collin Frendz, Dani Read on bass and drummer Dan Collins.) The New York City garage rockers’ self-released EP, my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Shut Out the Sky, is a four-song, sixteen-minute slice of snarling punk plucked straight from Iggy Pop or Husker Du’s back catalog.

Setting the album’s raw, immediate tone, opener “Dallas” takes a deceptively laid-back guitar riff and sets it on fire, transforming the track into a slow-burning buildup of throbbing drums and Frendz’s howling, occasionally warbling vocals. Confrontational and crunching in the vein of old-school punk, “Dallas” manages to evade the trap of muddy production, boasting crisp, clear mixing despite a backbreaking pace.

“Binge” is resoundingly Shut Out the Sky’s standout; with its choppy bursts of guitars and Frendz’s manic posturing, the track is nothing short of dynamic, seamlessly mixing catchy refrains with aggressive energy.

And of all the odd song-titles popping up lately, “Sarbanes-Oxley” is one of the weirder ones. Named for the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002 (thank you, Wikipedia…), “Sarbanes-Oxley,” though less immediately urgent than “Dallas” and “Binge,” nonetheless belies its tedious namesake with snappy punches of instrumentation.

Rounding things out is “Toxic Tornado,” a wailing, declarative rocker reminiscent of the Ramones. Tightly executed and brimming with frantic exuberance, “Tornado,” owing to its vigorous, stick-in-your-head lyrics, is also the most accessible on the EP.

On Shut Out the Sky, Victor Bravo definitely live up to its claim of “making anthems for wreckage.” If this is what they can do with a four-track EP, a full-length album is sure to be absolutely explosive.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2007 Melanie Love and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Independent release, and is used for informational purposes only.