If the ambitious post-punks of the eighties had already lived through the rise of 2010’s jangle-surf rock (Beach Fossils, Surfer Blood, etc.) and mid-2000’s college indie, the result would sound approximately like Expert Alterations. So it seems especially fitting that the Baltimore band’s self-titled EP made its debut on the ultimate underground retro medium–cassette–even if it was in June of this year rather than 25 years ago.
Expert Alterations understands the value of subtlety– the monotone vocals are casual but not too disinterested, and the smart, upbeat guitar jangles are vibrant and interesting but not too saccharine. Combined with some compelling off-kilter hooks (“Venetian Blinds”, “Memory Glands”) and tight production throughout, Expert Alterations have got themselves a nice ol’ debut collection of solid pop songs. It looks like they’ll be releasing an LP in 2015, so stay tuned.
Stream the EP in full on Bandcamp, where you can also pick up a copy of the cassette.