Zuli - On Human Freakout Mountain: Love Songs’ New Face Is Indie Pop

>> A new full-length album in the alternative scene was just dropped by New York band Zuli, whose sound is a warm blend of sappy love, psych rock, and indie pop.

The Good:

There isn’t a vocal bar that isn’t pure, perfect and powerful. Each lead melody is a beautiful standalone force, and the shifts between falsetto and tenor are impressive. The credit goes beyond the lead singer though, as the backup vocals are truly the band’s secret weapon.

The instrumental composition throughout the record is so goddamn wholesome. Not only is Zuli reassuring the music community that a band can still appeal to the masses using traditional instruments, they’re living proof that a full sound is achievable without overproducing the instruments to the nth degree.

An overwhelming theme amongst the instrumentals seems to be these crunchy and choppy chord hits. These synchronized and syncopated jolts serve as the tightest and most crisp bottom end the flowy vocals could have asked for. Synchronicity seems to something the band excels at in general, considering their creative layering of complicated guitar strumming patterns in a few songs. Fuzzy is the track that best captures this notion.

The Bad:

I didn’t find most of the lyrics on the album to be that special or groundbreaking. Most songs are transparent love songs touching on surface-level feelings that sound fairly specific to the author’s experiences and perspective. This is not at all to detract from the vocal delivery, which again is stellar.

The Review:

Zuli is taking a stab at nailing a difficult niche of music genres, and luckily for indie pop they are. They’ve defined a new way of delivering crushing emotive sounds while keeping energy levels at an all-time high. New York, New York is blessed to have them, let alone Rochester, who will be hosting them for a night at the Bug Jar on November 14th. If they deliver on stage even a fraction of the exciting sounds they’ve captured on their latest record, you’d be a fool to miss it. On Human Freakout Mountain is crisp, amped up and capable of upper-cutting all of your feeling centers. 4.7/5 <<