"Yard" by Slow Pulp Album Review by David Saxum for Northern Transmissions



Slow Pulp

In case our you missed them: We are revisiting our favourite albums of 2023.

The Wisconsin-bred, Chicago-based quartet—comprising Emily Massey (vocals/guitar), Henry Stoehr (guitar/producer), Teddy Mathews (drums), and Alex Leeds (bass)—has been on the indie circuit for a while, building a reputation for their electric chemistry on stage. It’s that very chemistry that oozes through every note of Yard.

Right from the outset, “Gone 2” has an undeniable magnetic pull. Emily Massey’s vocals are a captivating force, effortlessly drawing you into a world of introspection and raw emotion. It’s the kind of emotion that doesn’t merely brush the surface but digs deep into the core of your being. As you listen, you can feel the band’s intensity flowing through the speakers, reaching out and striking a chord deep within your soul. This is the kind of music that leaves an indelible mark, an imprint that lingers long after the last note fades away.

As you journey deeper into Yard, you’ll discover more moments of profound vulnerability. The eponymous track, Yard, takes center stage as a piano-driven ballad that cuts straight to the core. Emily Massey’s vocals are hauntingly beautiful, bearing the weight of the song’s introspective lyrics with grace. This track serves as a striking departure from the more upbeat numbers on the album, yet it injects vital diversity into the emotional tapestry of the record. Yard is a meticulously crafted, introspective piece that encapsulates the album’s overarching themes—a poignant reminder that some of the most profound self-discovery happens in the hushed, overlooked corners of our lives.

“Cramps” and “Worm” exemplify Slow Pulp’s versatility and their daring exploration of various textures. These tracks are like a time machine, slamming the door shut and whisking you back to an era where you’re eagerly burning the latest Blink-182 or Sum-41 track onto a CD. Each song is propelled by thunderous drums that surge through your veins like an adrenaline shot. Close your eyes while these tunes play, and you’ll find yourself in a dimly lit underground bar, the music so deafening it’s almost overwhelming. It’s the unapologetic energy that seems to be missing in much of today’s music landscape—a vivid reminder of music’s ability to kindle passion and craft indelible memories.

“Broadview” and “Fishes” bring Yard to a close on a contemplative note. Slow Pulp’s songwriting is at its finest here, leaving you with plenty to think about as the album concludes. These tracks echo the importance of learning to trust, love, and lean on others—themes that we all need a little reminding of.

Yard is an album that transcends the boundaries of music, capturing the essence of the human experience—the struggles, doubts, moments of clarity, and the unceasing need for connection. Slow Pulp’s latest masterpiece invites listeners on a profound introspective journey, urging us to embrace our vulnerabilities and seek solace in the shared tapestry of our lives. What sets Yard apart is the band’s remarkable ability to effortlessly bend genres, moving seamlessly from infectious pop-punk anthems to soul-stirring piano ballads and acoustic introspective lyrical poetry. With each track, you’re reminded of the band’s own journey of self-discovery and growth, as they lay bare their emotions and experiences for all to hear. Yard is more than an album; it’s a testament to the healing power of music, its ability to forge connections, and its capacity to make us feel less alone in a world that can often leave us adrift. Whether you’ve been a longtime fan of Slow Pulp or are just discovering their enchanting sound, Yard is a must-listen experience that will linger in your heart and mind long after the final notes have faded. It’s undoubtedly one of the standout albums of the year.

Stream Yard HERE.


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