All it takes is the opening bars of the lead track "Bardstown" to recall late adolescent memories that you hadn't even realized were forgotten. Handclaps, guitars bouncing off the walls and each other, and finally the keyboard riff that sweetly explodes every heart in the room.
Audubon Park formed from the sprockets of almost half a dozen other local bands, with David Nahm (formerly of V. Sirin), Matt Kalb (V. Sirin, Hotel Motel), Robert Biggers (Cold Sides, the Nein), Finn Cohen (the Nein) and Ben Spiker. With the 6 song EP, Angry Bees Outside, These Bees Inside, the upstart group instantly offers itself up to be one of the brightest and sprightliest of the scene. And though all surface indications scream 'side project' (including the EP packaging, which consists entirely of a blurry picture cutout of a boy and his dog), it has been assured that this is just a first batch of much more music to come.
"Oh Register, Why Are You Crying?" jumps up with a Cars riff, this coming shortly before The Strokes nabbed a similar one on their recent single. The song is an ode to ___'s cat, which he assures us is "the best cat in the world," and the band is just tight enough to doubt whether it's really just a tossed off joke; soon enough the chords break and it all erupts into a monstrous feline cacophony, but the drums groove on, persistent, while the doubt remains wonderfully unresolved.
The instruments are as carefully mixed as the vocals are carelessly tossed off. It's all classic indie rock, but never quite cops to a single influence, so it sounds close to, but not quite just like, your favorite band. And in the softer moments, like the ode to high school banding, "The Loud Half Hour," the irony and naivete mix together to make something both slack and anthemic. This is making music when there's nothing else to do; but of course, they wouldn't want to do anything else. --Greg Bloom