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The Young & Passionate Days of Carpedia - EP

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Album Review

For just being a two-man band, the Carps sure have a big sound. With Neil A. White manning the fuzzed-out bass and synthesizers and Jahmal Tonge on vocals and drums, the duo play driving, rhythmic rock that borrows equally from R&B, hip-hop, and punk. All of this is on display on their debut EP, the five-track The Young and Passionate Days of Carpedia, Vol. 2.1 (which contains the equally verbose song "The Tumultuous Adventures of JJ Iscariot and the Insatiable Booty Fantastic"), which — although the basslines can began to be repetitive and Tonge's voice can sometimes sound a little too nasally — is an energetic, dark, driving look into the realms of urban dance-rock. Sounding like an angrier, more soulful Kenna, the Carps pound their way through their songs, stopping only to give brief introductions ("This next song goes out to Condoleeza Rice and Jean Chrétien," Tonge announces before "Let's Fall in Love" launches into its tightly wound fury, while "All the Damn Kids" is dedicated to their native Toronto, and is also one of the best tracks on the EP, with a catchy synth line and lots of punch) before breathlessly moving on to the next one. It's fun, dark, intense music that doesn't exist much out of the time that created it, but it's that same ephemeral quality that adds a level of excitement and fragility to the Carps' swagger, and makes The Young and Passionate Days a great look and part of early 21st century urban-hipster youth.


Formed: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Rarely photographed without multi-colored leather hi tops, turquoise or pink T-shirts, and skinny jeans, the two members of the Carps wear their hipster cred on their sleeves while making a full and unique blend of R&B and stripped-down indie rock -- as a two-piece, no less. Neil White became friends with Jahmel Tonge at the university in Scarborough, Toronto, and the two started creating music as a free-spirited pastime to fill the hours between skateboarding and golfing. Melding influences from...
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The Young & Passionate Days of Carpedia - EP, The Carps
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