For Texas-based band Centro-matic, Candidate Waltz transcends mere album title.Intrinsically intimate and rhythmic, the disc plays like a drawn-out dance: Initially timid and distant, it crescendos into an up-close, catchy, and noteworthy experience for both audience and musician.
â€œAgainst the Lineâ€ introduces the band from a distance â€“ but only for an instant. Blaring guitar cuts in, sending a sonic shock that overshadows the bandâ€™s vocals in a not-quite symbiosis. Those vocals strengthen in â€œAll the Talkers,â€ the assonant, Strokes-esque second track. The gravelly voice, the catchy hook, the ear for melody:Â Each element transports listeners to the live show, bringing them one step closer to front row.
Third track and lead single â€œIso-Residueâ€ seemingly shifts us to chemistry class, but its staccato, static-y, and slick-yet-sticky beat easily sticks to our bones. â€œEstimate X 3â€ continues this offbeat titles trend, albeit, in a slowed-down, background fashion. Its charging guitars remain in the shadows, but beg to surface. Â Â
For all of these positives, one track clearly triumphs: â€œOnly in My Double Mindâ€ is a supercharged, driving, and surprisingly authentic mish-mash of decades. Chants of â€œooh, oohâ€ recall a classic rock show. What more could you need? Â Â Â
Pulsing closer â€œIf They Talk You Downâ€ brings the band full circle. The first trackâ€™s guitar returns with a vengeance, setting the tone for the discâ€™s tense, suspenseful, but ultimately satisfying farewell.
Candidate Waltz is available now via Undertow.