Album Review: Tides by Ballroom Boxer

Have you ever felt like popular music has gotten too complex? Are you a bit tired of seeing a band with 9 members, two of which are on the xylophone for two songs and otherwise hold a tambourine? Sometimes what you need is to get back to the rock n’ roll, and we have something for just that today. 10898237_762827943799968_331728862441660863_n Local alternative rockers Ballroom Boxer released their new album, Tides, on Friday, July 15th as a follow up to Sundownr, released in 2013. The record is cohesive, a quality attained in this case by a lack of over complication. While one can hear the band stray towards punk, grunge, and even country, what remains is that feeling at your core that these gents appreciate strait rock, and want it to come back. They waste no time showing that in the first few songs of Tides. “Oh, Money” kicks it off with high energy and a catchy chorus, followed by the anthem-like title track that is easy to envision ringing through a field at an outdoor festival with the hot sun beating down. Then they bring it down a bit with beach-like guitar vibes and mellow choruses. There’s something about those Real Estate-eque reverb settings that adds a great dimension to rock music, and the guitar setting selections by their lead guitarist brought me there. Ballroom Boxer bring the energy back up around “Nowhere To Go,” a track that almost resembles the low-fi, simple rock appeal that made Is This It so great exactly 15 years ago. All in all, Ballroom Boxer won’t mess around with you. They aren’t loading up with too many effects or instruments, and instead just want to bring the rock with the great sounds they have remaining mostly consistent. There’s a distinction between being too repetitive within a record and doing it with a tasteful purpose, and we leave it to you to decide which one is exemplified within Tides.   The album is available on Bandcamp, Spotify, and iTunes now, and you can see them this Saturday, August 6, at Bottom Lounge for their release show. This 17+ show starts at 8:30pm, with doors opening at 8pm. Don't miss the openers, Ayoh, Simpleton & Cityfolk, and Eiffel Tower. Tickets are available for $10 online or at the door.
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Matt Brooks