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Life of the Party - EP

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Album Review

After issuing the Japanese-only Tidal Wave EP, Longwave turned around and issued the Life of the Party EP for American fans to maintain their momentum between albums. The Strangest Things catapulted the New York indie outfit into the more chic music circles throughout 2003, and critics adored their dreamy rock style. Unfortunately, Life of the Party isn't a continuation of that; it's an obvious attempt to explore and experiment with new sounds. What's so peculiar about this, though, is how Longwave come off slightly confused about what they're creating. The lilting acoustic ballad "There's a Fire" and the hollow synth/guitar tango of "Here It Comes" are sonically more on par; however, the title track is just a glimpse of how misguided Longwave might be. Or are they not? Life of the Party exists with five individual songs, and if the listener is able to approach it from that standpoint, this EP will be an entertaining lead to what follows. "We're Not Gonna Crack" is beautifully demented with pinch-hitting guitar riffs and a clever, chunky chorus. Luckily, such distortion muddles the celestial electronic layers echoing throughout. It's too bad that "Life of the Party" doesn't have the same effect. Any expectation for Longwave delivering a much heavier desire on top of what they've previously released simply isn't there. That's OK for a completist. Perhaps it's just Longwave's way of showcasing their work in progress, and in that case, Life of the Party is a decent collection of songs. [Videos for "Wake Me When It's Over," "Tidal Wave," and "Everywhere You Turn" are also included here.]


Formed: 1999 in New York, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Taking influence from shoegaze pioneers and post-punk icons, Longwave got their start in 1999 when Steve Schiltz (vocals/guitar), Shannon Ferguson (guitar), Dave Marchese (bass), and Mike James (drums) congregated in a small New York studio to record demo material. Gigs in Lower Manhattan sharpened the group's sound, which melded sweeping melodies with touches of space rock, and Longwave soon caught the eye of local club owner Rob Sacher. The quartet then became the house band at Sacher's own establishment,...
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Life of the Party - EP, Longwave
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