The State Of
The Live Studio Sessions EP (self-released)
Drummer Nabedi Osorio and vocalist/keyboard Steph Taylor have become local favorites with their work as the State Of. Both play well and share an excellent chemistry that, though it's kind of journalistically douchey to do so, can be compared to a few similar national acts. There are the sentiments and the softness of Mates of State, the sexiness of Mommy and Daddy, and even the fun and cheekiness of Captain & Tennille. These six ditties are great listens from beginning to end, with honest and poetic lyrics; "All Come Back" and "Anything for You" are repeat faves. If you haven't already, check these two out live; they are excellent and engaging.
Assimilation Illusion (Quantum Release Records)
Here's another disc I had in the "someday" pile, and I might as well get to it. Initially I thought, "OK, this opens with a piano number à la Tori Amos. This might work 'cause Ms. Frightdoll is not that frightening and is kinda easy on the eyes if you're into that gothic look." And then "Alone in This" happens, and sure, it's that weird techno-tinged industrial thing with reverby bass that doesn't exactly make a lot of sense to me. She revisits the feel of the opening track on "Distant" while keeping the computerized stuff to a minimum and closes on that note again in the ambient "Sweet Serenity." Personally, I'd like to hear more of the piano stuff.
The Dreamer or the Dream (Guardians Records)
Andrew Bayuk hails from Coral Springs and has been active for many years locally. Here, in this 11-song effort, he further expounds on his folky take on protest compositions, guitar-driven numbers, and generally hippie-ish tunes. Just check the titles of songs like "Through the Eyes of the Other" and "Think Peace." While not exactly on the Bob Dylan tip, Bayuk is certainly more interested in concepts of self-improvement, and his poetry drives the narratives that way. Local politicos might wanna buy the rights to his closer, "Save the USA," if they plan on doing an honest job with their politicking. Oh wait, that'll never happen.