Durham City’s T-Shirt Weather and Kingston’s Losing Sleep have teamed up with Everything Sucks Music to bring the world a brand new split 12-inch. Both bands are relatively young (according to each of their Facebook pages, T-Shirt Weather formed in 2011 and Losing Sleep just a year later), so a split is exactly the kind of beneficial thing to be a part of while still developing and honing their craft (T-Shirt Weather a little less so than Losing Sleep, as they’ve already amassed an EP, a single, and an LP as opposed to Losing Sleep’s sole demo). Side A sees T-Shirt Weather providing four songs, while Losing Sleep rounds out the B-side with three contributions, and even though there’s an odd number of tracks the two bands find a nice balance between each other anyway.
T-Shirt Weather kicks things off with “Hold Me Closer Whiny Dancer” (a title worthy of at least a good chuckle, if not more). “Whiny Dancer” sets the groundwork for what T-Shirt Weather is all about: energetic songs about being sad. And lots of fuzzy and sloppy sounding guitars that would make any indie college rock band proud. The songs have a winking grin-like quality to them (how can they not with titles like “What More Did You Expect From These Chords?” or “Penny, You Are My Constant”) [Editor’s Note: In case you missed out on the cultural phenomenon-turned-disappointment known as ABC’s LOST, that latter title is a reference to the show], and you can tell that this three piece has fun playing together. There’s also a saxophone that shows up from time to time (First toward the end of “Hold Me Closer Whiny Dancer”, and again in “Penny, You Are My Constant”).
Losing Sleep’s half has a slightly more serious tone to it, if only due to the cleaner sounding production. With this being the band’s first major release, they have a lot more to prove, and they come out swinging like they came out of the Long Island scene circa 2002. Armed with a knack for a catchy chorus and pop punk hooks that aren’t too sugary, Losing Sleep also has time for plenty of lyrical and titular references of their own (noted con artist Canada Bill Jones gets paraphrased in “It’s ‘Card Sharp’ Not ‘Card Shark’”, Sage Francis gets a nod in “July Inside”, and “This Is My Dillon Now” pays homage to NBC’s football drama Friday Night Lights). Losing Sleep may have one less song on this split, but they make up for it by contributing three really well-crafted songs.
Both bands will have to step it up a notch if they want to fill up an entire album’s worth of material but they still show a lot of promise for a full length (especially Losing Sleep). It’s not perfect, but in just 25 minutes, T-Shirt Weather and Losing Sleep are able to acquaint listeners to their respective sounds in a way that will leave them demanding for more. And in the end, that’s what a good split between two up-and-coming bands should do.
3.5 / 5
Give a listen to the split below.
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