Stark – Watch Your Signals
Genre: Post-Punk, Dream Pop, Alternative Rock
Stark are a band that marries post-punk, alternative rock, and funk on their single Watch Your Signals.
What did the original host of post-punk do really other than play punk rock music like the drunken members of an orchestra might? While punk-rock music was a way of disguising your inability to play, post-punk was regularly used as an opportunity to show the world just how smart you were, and how dumb it was bound to stay.
It worked too. Few genres or sub-styles have as many modern followers. From groups whose members wear matching suits and sing in a haunting, monotone baritone, to bands that play the funk the Sex Pistols trying to annoy audiences made up of Texan cowboys, post-punk is everywhere.
One group intent on picking up the mantle is Stark. They’ve got everything you might want in a post-punk group. They sound like Gang of Four, play funky rhythms like kids who’ve just discovered caffeine and seem to have a strict, careful hair care regimen. Watch Your Signals finds them throwing in a few grunge screams for good measure. Festival stages beware! Stark are hungry, clean, and ready to steal James Brown’s shoes if it would get an audience to dance.
Bigkarma – Try
Genre: Grunge, Alternative Rock
Bigkarma take rock music back to where it should always end up, mingling with bad company on the dance floor.
Industrial metal and bands like Nine Inch Nails achieved immense success and had a host of imitators looking to ride their coattails. Many of them produced spooky, skull-bashing tunes that sent mosh pits wild over the sound electro rhythms. That was fun, sure!
But, Trent Reznor’s music, as well as the ones that really embraced it, had something else going for it. This wasn’t metal music, really. It was dance music infused with an insane metal edge. Their songs felt like a night out in the kind of dark, foreboding dance club one might fear not being able to get out of. Basically, a night out in Berlin.
Bigkarma hit the nail on the head. Try is a dance tune disguised as an angry alternative rock number. Instead of a drum crash, or a weird special effect to mark the rhythm’s hook, the British group relies on the growl of the vocals. Instead of having a song that relies purely on synths, Bigkarma uses a large guitar sound to do the job. Bigkarma does a great job in sounding menacing and attractive, a trick that’s very difficult to pull off.