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Album Review: “In Case You Just Tuned In” by White Label Analog

dscf1196_origAccording to White Label Analog, there is an often repeated adage in the music industry – “You have a lifetime to make your first record.” However, that freedom of time is almost always coupled with increased pressure. That pressure becomes a two-edged sword that often leads to higher expectations and also can inspire musicians to push themselves beyond their limits.

The members of Austin, Texas-based band—vocalist Chris Didear, guitarist/vocalist James Millican, drummer/vocalist Heath Macintosh, keyboardist/vocalist Alison Pepper, and bassist Aaron Herbster – have achieved this fine balance on their new album, In Case You Just Tuned In.  The alternative-pop songs are easy to listen to and are upbeat while also prodding the listener to think for themselves.  Lead single “Echoes” epitomizes this idea of taking in and appreciating each snapshot moment.

The “echoes” of the title says Didear,

Are the reverberations of our experience on earth that continue after we are no longer here.

The album is self-produced which gives the band ultimate creative control.  White Label Analog did get some mixing help from a couple of mixing engineers including 11-time Grammy-nominated Mark Needham (The Killers, Neon Trees, Imagine Dragons), as well as Dwight Baker, Mark Dufour and Chris “Frenchie” Smith.  These talented engineers helped the band achieve the best, most well-rounded version of each of the 11 tracks on the album.

According to Heath Macintosh,

In Case You Just Tuned In is a veritable snap shot of our lives since releasing (their 2015 EP) A Little More Time.  A reflection of our ideas, feelings, and the experiences we’ve all shared.

White Label Analog is reminiscent of Imagine Dragons and Neon Trees, and if you like those bands, you will enjoy this record.  The songwriting and musicianship of this group are excellent, and Chris Didear’s vocals are unique without being discordant or over-powering.  Of particular note is the way the keyboard tracks flows in and out of the rest of the instruments in an almost serpentine fashion.  Alison Pepper has a light and sure touch on the keys which provides the stitching to hold the melody, harmony and rhythm tracks together.  I highly recommend this album.

 

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