SIGNALS MIDWEST: Light on the Lake: LP

May 20, 2014

Signals Midwest is one of those bands I’d heard plenty about in various circles for the past few years but had never gotten around to actually checking out. There’s a lot about this that I dig. The little American Football-esque lead flourishes, the often Bob Nanna-esque vocal delivery, the general late-’90s Midwest emo worship… but there’s something about the sum of the parts that doesn’t sit right with me. I think perhaps it’s just a bit too slick for my liking. Part of the charm of the ‘90s emo era was its rough-around-the-edges-ness that kept it rooted in the punk / hardcore scene of the time (which was likewise quite prone to melodrama), but when delivered via modern machines it seems to lose much of the scrappy urgency that had me in sweater vests for a good two years. 

 –Dave William (Tiny Engines,