FANTASY FOUR, THE/JULIA SETS: The Bert Dax Cavalcade of Stars Travelling Road Show: Split CDEP

Each band gets three tracks to show their stuff: Maplewood, Missouri’s Fantasy Four is a dual-female vocal tuneful indie-pop guitar band whose “Hometown Rockstar” is the clear standout of their three raw tracks. Not too far off from a nascent Chubbies, or maybe Scrawl twenty years ago. A good start. St. Louis band Julia Sets’ cuts are more polished, smoother and prettier despite having male vocals – a bit more “mature,” I suppose, but less attractive in their drama and measured choices than Fantasy Four, who sound freer and definitely less pretentious. Kind of along the lines of Pinetop Seven, and I definitely get the feeling someone in this band has math-rock discs in their collection. I think Julia Sets kind of misses the spirit of the split release by having one of their three tracks last for over nine minutes – nearly as long as the other five songs put together! Between the two bands, I have to say I’d much rather see Fantasy Four, but neither band has anything to be ashamed of here.

 –Aaron J. Poehler (The Bert Dax Cavalcade of Stars)