The Armed Forces
August 16, 2009
BY JASON SONGE
The guitarist jumped off the kick drum but didn't hit the ground when the drummer hit his cymbal. Still, A for effort.
This power pop quartet from Nashville is still learning its way around a stage(they look like they're 21 or 22), but their songs leave little to be desired. Catchy melodies--check. Two-part harmonies--check. Attention to dynamics--check.
There's a reason they're called The Armed Forces. They certainly sound like they've listened to that Elvis Costello and The Attractions album over and over again. Add a bit of The Cars, an open ride cymbal, and the bitter wit of Costello and the heart on sleeve lyrics of The Replacements and you'll be pretty close to the presentation of The Armed Forces.
The leader's guitar and vocals got lost in the mix, but that's about the only criticism I have for the band. Just keep kickin' out the subtle nuances. This pop rock songwriting thing isn't easy.