Chicago outfit Videotape is a band that dips firmly into ‘90s rock sounds. Thankfully, though, This is Disconnect doesn’t hide behind tape hiss or bedroom lo-fi. The five-piece band brings out an unabashedly big sound, from the jagged riffs of “No One” to the shoegaze grind of “Pulling Teeth” to the moody, jangling expanse of “Walking in Circles”. The band is at its best when it deals in shadowy territory. Lead singer Sophie Leigh has an unpredictable, beautiful voice, that can scrape out the bottom of “The Creeps” or take “Form” to new angelic heights. They’re a loud, brash band that never let atmosphere overtake hooks, but they’re best when they mesh the two. The bald-faced riffage they break into at the end of “No One” doesn’t feel as substantial as their more intricate layers, and opener “Static” feels thin with its trebled-out hooks. Still, This is Disconnect is a varied and often impressive set of tunes from a curiously talented new band. If they play to their myriad strengths going forward, look out for what they might do next.
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