Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Street Smart Cyclist-Our Neighboorhood Records

June 1, 2007

streetsmartcyclistStreet Smart CyclistS/t 7”

Our Neighboorhood Records

Extremely intricate, creative, passionate and talented 90’s emo followers create an astounding 7”.

When a press release says that you’ll know ten seconds in, it’s almost never true. There’s just not often reason to jump up and down about a band after ten seconds of music. But with Street Smart Cyclist, the PR don’t lie: as soon as “Hoods Up!” kicks in, you’re introduced to a torrential, gymnastic, tom-heavy drum beat; a hyper-active, coiling clean guitar riff that probably sounds even cooler when you see the guy’s fingers flying across the fretboard live; a second guitar playing inviting, fanfare-ish chords. Can you attention-grabbing?

And once they have your attention, Street Smart Cyclist keeps it by combining extremely complex and talented songwriting with passionate performances, audience interaction (group yelling AND clapping), memorable melodies (“When I would talk talk talk you were always there to listen!!!”) and a general aura of honesty – both lyrically and musically – that sucks you in.

That honest musicianship in both lyric and melody is something that is sorely missing in today’s scene – Street Smart Cyclist is a band of 6 guys playing their heart out for the heck of it. They’re not going to get famous playing their extremely intricate brand of 90’s emo – but they give it their all. And their all is manifested in some of the most talented music I’ve ever heard – the ridiculous intricacy of “Pastor of Muppets” is usually reserved for heady prog-rockers, not down-to-earth heart-on-sleevers. This music is the stuff my dreams are made of: honest music to yell your lungs out to that retains melody, artsy creativity and jaw-dropping intricacy. I can’t even imagine the amount of time it took to compose something like “The Three Lane Cut,” or the amount of time it took to get technically proficient enough on their instruments to even pull off something like “Pastor of Muppets.”

Basically, if you like punk, art-rock, prog-rock, post-rock, or just passionate music in general, you must must must must check out Street Smart Cyclist. This is high up on my “best releases of the year” list and it’s only a three-song 7”. I wish I could rain down copies of this EP from the sky onto art districts in large cities and introduce everyone to these wonderful chaps – because the world needs more Street Smart Cyclist. Honestly.

-Stephen Carradini

Stephen@independentclauses.com

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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