Escape Plan EP
Step Pepper Records
Local band Nowhere Squares, with their new EP Escape Plan, have managed to put together something of a résumé in the form of eight tracks. There is a definite, obvious continuity to the style of the music, and this is one band that could never be accused of phoning it in; there is nothing generic or phony here. At the same time, there is enough variation from track to track that even those listeners who are not familiar with the band’s style should hear something that they can appreciate.
One descriptor that would fit nearly all of the tracks on the EP is “energetic” — perhaps sometimes even “frantic” would be appropriate — particularly in reference to the tempo, and also to the wound-up, high-pitched vocals of singer (and artist) Paul Cordes Wilm. The whole album has a fast-moving feel and a definite forward trajectory, carried especially well by the wonderfully tight rhythm section.
“Don’t Fit In,” the second track, is a stand-out example of the way the band’s quirky qualities can join with the more straightforward skillfulness of its individual musicians to create such a singular sound. The bass line has something almost blues-like to it, but the rest of the song, and even parts of the bass line itself, falls more under the header of rock ‘n’ roll or punk.
The EP’s name is fairly appropriate: it would make a perfectly serviceable soundtrack for a ride in a getaway car, with all the bumps and screeching tires, and perhaps even a bit of shattering glass, that that would entail. Also, like that ride, the album may cause many feelings, but boredom would not be among them.