Review Summary: You think she's had enough; it's not enough. She always wants more, she always wants more.
Indie pop bands that play catchy-as-hell synth-y songs that sound like someone barfed up the 80s all over their speakers isn’t anything new. MGMT and Passion Pit are staples of high school/college kids across the world. “Chillwave” is a “genre”. So what Stepdad does isn’t necessarily anything new. The style of music that Stepdad plays is the same stuff you hear on all sorts of indie blogs. It’s not surprising that a new indie band is making this style of music. But what is surprising is how well Stepdad does it.
As I just stated, Stepdad makes catchy synthpop. And they master it. This is surprising that these guys only have a few years worth of experience for musicianship. The way they craft pop songs makes it seem like they’ve been doing it for years. These aren’t just good pop songs, they’re not just great. They’re fantastic. One song almost comes close to perfection. Look up “My Leather, My Fur, My Nails” on Youtube. It’ll be the first thing that pops up.
Congratulations, that song is now stuck in your head forever. “My Leather, My Fur, My Nails” is perhaps the catchiest song of the past year, and not in the Ke$ha “TiK ToK” way. It’s more catchy in the way that “Surfin’ USA” is. After hearing it once, it’s going to be in your head all day. But you like having it in your head. Thinking about it puts you in a good mood; your foot starts tapping as you hum a few bars of it on your way to work/school.
Okay, so that’s one fantastic song. How can the rest of the EP possibly stack up to it? Well, it definitely doesn’t disappoint. Stepdad fills its half-hour playtime with catchy hooks and great pop music. “Wolf Slaying as My Hobby,” “Squares”and“ Baby Hammers are more examples of great songs that will get stuck in your head. Other songs like “Parrots” and “Jungles,” while not as catchy, are still fantastic pop songs. "Cutie Boots" is a nice ballad with acoustic guitar that's perhaps my favorite track on the EP. You’ll have a hard time believing these songs were recorded in somebody’s basement as opposed to a studio. The lyrics don't seem especially deep.
The music that you’ll hear on this EP is on the same level of those bands I mentioned in the first paragraph. Sure, there’s nothing Ordinaire that’s even close to as good as “Kids” or “Sleepyhead.” But after listening to this EP again and again, I can say with complete honesty that Stepdad has the capability to. They’re a pretty small band that just gained 1000 fans on their Facebook page, and only has a couple thousand scrobbles on last.fm, but if they keep making pop music this well-crafted, this review won’t be the last place you’ll hear about Stepdad.