EX-OPTIMISTS, THE: Bee Corpse Collector: LP

Wow, this is great! At their most subdued moments, this sounds like a shoegaze record that should have come out in the early ‘90s. I hear similarities to bands like Ride, Slowdive, or Pale Saints. You know the sound: quiet yet tuneful pop songs often with layers of guitar effects and softly sung vocals. When the songs here venture out and get more aggressive, they almost veer into Superchunk-esque pop songs. Both options work great together and compliment each other, as the band keeps a single identity throughout the record rather than sounding like someone changing their style from song to song. Recommended.

 –Mark Twistworthy (Sinkhole Texas, sinkholetexas.com)