Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Yellerkin - Yellerkin EP (2014)
The first time I heard Brooklyn via Katonah, New York duo Yellerkin, it was pretty much instantaneous love. Their debut single "Solar Laws" was such a lush, multi-layered pop juggernaut that I found myself instantly under it's infectious thrall. When news that the duo would be releasing their debut EP, I knew I'd pretty much be the first one in line to sample the sweet, supple homemade jams of Yellerkin's self-titled debut and I'm pleased to say it certainly doesn't disappoint.
For what it's worth, leading the EP with "Solar Laws" is a rather impressive gambit. It is far and away the duo's best track and features a surprisingly different level of complexity than the rest of the EP. For one, "Solar Laws" is all vibrant, craning melodies and a delicate, ocean-deep layering. It's the kind of song where the more you listen to it, the more casually reveals itself. From it's syncopated beats, it's delightful use of banjo, "Solar Laws" is a fortuitous display of the band's innate musicianship that isn't really gleaned elsewhere on the EP.
The EP's second track "Leave Me Be" is perhaps a much more apt display at what the EP has to offer as a whole. While "Solar Laws" surges forward with a surprising band-like intensity, "Leave Me Be" and the rest of the self-titled EP contain a much more producer-esque electronic pulse. That's not all bad however, stripped down from the dense perpetuum mobile, the rest of the EP luxuriates in emotive splendor. There's no shortage of poppy hooks but there's no denying "Leave Me Be", "Vines" or even "Tomboy" are a lot less emotionally restrained. Even though there's an electro-pop approach taken towards the bulk of the EP, there isn't any lack of raw emotion or organic musical ideas.
While I wish there was more of a bridge between songs like "Solar Laws" and the sparse "Tomboy", there's no denying that Yellerkin's EP is an enjoyable work. The duo are certainly onto something special and there's no doubt that as they continue to explore and grow, we're bound to get far more impressive feats of song construction. "Solar Laws" might be the EP's MVP but the other tracks aren't that far behind, displaying a versatility young artists like Yellerkin are lucky to have.
Yellerkin's self-titled debut is out now: