Fallz

Savior (Self-released)

The first thing you'll notice when you crack open this disc is the colorful, baroque photo of Fallz's main players, Aya Gruber and Brett Fisher. OK, maybe it's the leggy Gruber you'll notice, but either way, the group's visual appeal is just the icing on this electro-rock layer cake. It's the audio ingredients that make this seven-song EP a winner — an equally solid mix of songwriting, execution, and production. Savior is the first release by this Miami-based group, which is already on the international scene thanks to European producer Robert Collado. The opening track, "Savior," is as good an introduction to Fallz as any — danceable synth beats, thick (but unobtrusive) guitar riffs, and a hummable chorus. With Gruber's soaring vocals peppering a cloud of dark yet catchy melodies, the obvious comparisons are Garbage's Shirley Manson and Evanescence's Amy Lee (with some Nine Inch Nails-styled sounds providing the backbeat). Though, on "Just See Night," Gruber's melancholic crooning sounds more like a female version of Bauhaus' Peter Murphy. It probably goes without saying that Gruber's lyrics aren't shiny-happy love ditties. This is emotionally bleak stuff here ("I took the pain out of this world/And fetal in your arms I'd curl," Gruber sings on "Slip Away"); still, it's not Marilyn Manson bleak. Again, think Shirley Manson. And while you're at it, check 'em out at www.fallz.com.

 
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