Thursday, March 12, 2015

New Music: Something Clever

Since last fall my backlog of local album and EP releases has been accumulating. In a perfect world I would have time to give all of them adequate attention, but time doesn't always allow for that against other deadlines. It's not always possible in the music industry to form more than an initial opinion, so I like to live with releases for a couple weeks - at least - to give the music time to sink in and give myself time for thoughts to form.

Because that's not always possible I've decided to add a weekly feature to the blog where I focus on one new release with links to the music. Readers have ears. They can listen and make up their own minds.

This week it's Charlotte hard rock/metal band Something Clever, who celebrates the release of  its "Season of Darkness" EP Friday at Tremont Music Hall. The dynamic five-piece band plays tense, textured metal that shifts between thick chunking riffs and flashier guitar work amid vocals that sometimes propel to a scream, vivid bass work, and pummeling rhythms that aren't afraid to pull back when the mood calls for it. You can listen to two tracks here.

Did I mention their lead guitarist is female? Unfortunately that's still not that common in hard rock and metal, but for me (who had few female guitar role models) it adds to Something Clever's appeal. Those chauvinists I grew up with who doubted a girl could shred (not that I could) would never know the difference listening to "Season of Darkness."

It's interesting that Something Clever was tapped to create a track for WSOC's Friday night high school football show in 2013, because listening to the anthem "Best Laid Plans" during the group's segment on WEND 106.5 Sunday I thought they'd be perfect to score WWE entrance music or a UFC pay-per-view. It's got that muscular mix of hope, confidence, and swagger and the sing-along parts don't hurt it's mainstream appeal either.

You can catch Something Clever Friday or pre-order the EP for $5 on the band's website. You can find it on iTunes and at as well. The show starts at 6:30 p.m. and is stacked with local and regional acts Beyond the Fade, A Light Divided, A Graceful Regret, and Ozai - former members of S.I.Q. Admission to the all ages show is $8 to $10.