First off, I have nothing but love for this band, but there is something I have to get off my chest before we proceed: they have a stupid name. It is one of the most internet-unfriendly names I have ever encountered. There, I said it. Now we can move on.
The duo from Pittsburgh began making waves back in 2010 when they released a couple of singles, but it wasn’t until they played a string of performances at SXSW that they generated a good amount of buzz as a “band to watch”. Now they are back again with their full-length debut album, New Heaven, released on June 21st via Frenchkiss Records. And it is pretty great. I am loving every second of it.
Their sound is rich and interesting, but above all, it is diverse. I think the best feature about this album is its unpredictability. 1,2,3 blend sounds that are characteristic to an array of genres, but still manage to avoid getting trapped in a particular genre themselves. They switch from “Work”‘s thundering drums, to the electronic slow jam “Heat Lightnin’”. Some songs are fun, infectious and effortlessly catchy, like “Scared, But Not That Scared” and “Confetti”; the songs with a more calm, languid tone like “Riding Coach” are beautiful in their own right. It’s the kind of album that keeps you on your toes, trying to figure out what they’ll come up with next. Nic Snyder’s vocals are just as elastic as the album. On some tracks he belts out with great force, on others, he is more soulful and restrained. His voice sets the tone of each song; sometimes soaring and sometimes almost dropping to a whisper – but always on point.
This could very well be a strong contender for album of the summer. You can download a couple of their tracks for free if you visit their website.
Video for “Work”:
Connect with 1,2,3: MySpace