Elmont, the critically acclaimed four-piece alternative band from North Dallas, made up of John Muhl (guitars, vocals), Jamie Stafford (bass, keys, vocals), Chance Day (guitars) and Chris Amerson (Drums). The band launched their assault on the industry with their debut single, “Home” in 2016, are finally back with their brand new 6 track EP, entitled simply…“ELMONT”. The project was recorded and mixed at Fifty 50 Studios in downtown Dallas, TX and mastered at Turtle Tone Studio in NY. Within four weeks of their CMJ radio campaign, with the support and direction of respected Tinderbox Music, the album is already on 70 college radio stations. Elmont released the record on September 2nd, 2017 and are set to follow up with a tour.
Expectancy will always spoil a party, as they say. Hype will just as often bury a band and embarrass gushing music critics as it will justly sum up the exciting nature of great new music. The deciding factor is, of course, whether or not such an overtly approved outfit are any good. In the case of Elmont, it just so happens that the music in question is every bit as good as it’s made out to be, and a whole lot better than you expected.
The EP’s uncanny first strains comes from its lead single, “Waiting on a Phone Call” with galloping layers of sparkling guitars which arrive like a sweeping breeze, pulling Muhl’s voice into the honeyed comfort of his sweet spot.
Fundamentally, Elmont’s approach takes the popular song back 40 years to a point where music sounded uncomplicated, fresh, simple and beautiful. From there on, they work their way back to a modern sound and production, to reach a vibrant pinnacle of instrumentation and intricate vocal harmonies.
The second track, “Falling”, is the epitome of the above statement. With its impressionistic lyrics and unforced melody, it builds to dynamic choruses and captivating clean guitar strums, gripping the listener with its choral chants, and embellished with a tasteful guitar solo.
Elmont is a welcome arrival representing music, in the modern day, as an outlet just to be emotional – a place where original but melodic imagination and structure can flow. Rich and deftly arranged, this is a confident and crafted set of songs.
“Nothing in Particular” sees the slightly dirtier guitars lead this softly soaring track through pleasant musical imagery to match the pristine beauty of its lyrics and groove. On the slower, “Apartment”, John Muhl more distinctively holds the lead singing position and does so with supreme confidence and grace.
This song works as excellent introduction to the band’s pride in clear vocals and rich but subtle harmonization. Once again, the Elmont tread the line between a bare boned jam and luscious choruses perfectly; nothing feels contrived and there is an excellent balance of buildup and reward.
“Drama Queen” is a heart-warming splendor of sound that unabashedly moves spirits and moods, harking back to the reverie in the depths of the glory days of Americana music. The band’s debut single, “Home” closes the EP, with its modern indie rock flavor. It’s one of the tracks that resonates more emotionally on the recording due to its lyrical play on nostalgia – a recurring human condition that never leaves people untouched.
When a band comes along with a sound that is classic but uniquely new, comparisons are always tempting. The fact is, this EP is timeless, eloquent and understated perfection. It is art without pretension. Simply stunning melodies, harmonies and musical accompaniment. You can almost anticipate that much greater things are ahead for Elmont. Highly Recommended!