By Sawyer Stull
Artist: The Walters
Album: Young Men
Release Date: December 23, 2016
Young Men is the second EP from the Chicago rock quintet The Walters. The band first found success after posting their song “I Love You So” to reddit, in which it earned over 40,000 plays in two days on bandcamp.com. At the beginning of December this year, it made its way to Spotify’s “Global Viral 50.” Surprisingly, the band, formed a little over a year ago, remains unsigned.
The five self-described “cardigan rock” artists did an excellent job right out of the gate with the opening track “Sweet Marie” with its warm and inviting tone.
From there, they switch to a more rock ‘n’ roll sound with the second track “I Haven’t Been True,” which is much faster paced. The track is definitely one of the many highlights on the album with an energetic verse that shifts down into a very heavy pre-chorus that builds from single strum power chords.
The band can really switch the overall tone of some of their songs on the drop of a dime. This is really featured on the track “City Blues,” which starts with a vibrant and twangy guitar with great rhythm. The song tackles the issue of getting through living in city with lyrics, “This is all I need to get me through the city blues, so give me a swig and let me be.” Once the chorus hits, the song feels incredibly full of sound and almost over the top, but in a good way. If that wasn’t enough, the song features an incredible build up to the bridge at the end of the song.
The EP turns to a much softer note with the song “Cottage Roads,” which features mainly just a single guitar and the lead singer, Luke Olson. The lyrics are what make the song really great because they’re incredibly honest and relatable, with such lines as “I can never be a tough guy, I’ll play cards right.”
The last song of the EP “Autumn Leaves” feels more like an exclamation point than a period. Once again starting with that warm, inviting tone that combined with the lyrics of the song flows incredibly smooth from verse to chorus. The song really ramps up at the end with a great build up that is capped off by an incredible bass line from bassist Danny Wells that is full of energy and funk.
If you’re someone that is a fan of the retro, surf pop with splashes of indie rock, The Walters and their album Young Men is right up your alley. The short seven-song track list flies by in no time at all but as soon as the EP is over, it leaves you wanting to start the whole thing over from the top. Hopefully, these self-described hunks from Chicago will soon get their break; they definitely deserve it. You can stream their work on Spotify or go to their bandcamp and download the album.