A promising, energetic debut
Enumclaw, an up-and-coming rock band from Tacoma, Washington, has a promising debut with their EP Jimbo Demos. From the verbal cues from the first few seconds of the EP to the rough-around-the-edges vocals, passion for music is evident. The style promotes a desire to create work.
The first track, “Cents,” takes the listener to a noise-rock sound. It’s energetic and dynamic, even within its short runtime. It places itself as an opening with a large push-and-pull style that is easily listenable. Many times, production can be muddled on this type of work. However, the bright instrumentation makes it easy to relisten to. It is a rhythm that has a jamming component to it, giving it a personality that makes the song undeniably full of life.
“Cinderella” is perhaps the most punk-inspired track on the album. With its wailing lyricism, the story of Cinderella is related to the experience of the singer, Aramis Johnson, who describes the loneliness of being left alone “searching for shoes.” It is a raw track, reiterating that they are unable to be the type of person he wants to see himself being. Despite this, the instrumentals prevent it from being a ballad, showing a desire to keep energy throughout.
However, the lead single from the EP, “Fast N All,” is a track that has a dynamic use of instrumentals, with its explosive guitar almost overpowering the chorus before calming into the more melodic chords used for the verses. Collapsing into the idea that there is “too much” to deal with, the song drifts into cacophonous noise. It is overwhelming, powerful and the strongest song on the EP.
“Free Drop Billy” begins with its droning bass before transferring to its verse. Like much of the album, the ideas of remorse and self-consciousness are key themes of the song. It is here where the most impressive guitar work lies, having a sense of power to it that makes it hard to ignore the singer’s desperate pleas to not fall into the trap of becoming a “loser.”
The last song, “Fruit Flies,” is the closest the album gets on the EP. It is a fall into anxious sadness in more toned-down instrumentation. This track is the most impactful, as it amalgamates the noise-rock sound with more contemporary melodies, describing the impacts of relationships. The sorrowful guitar is dynamic, engaging in a way that makes one want more out of its short runtime. It is one of the most impactful parts of the album, the final seconds in which the solo runs free.
However, just as the first track begins with the talking between band members, the last ends with a conversation to “laugh it up,” an engagement that is remarkably interesting in promoting the idea of a live concert. Assembled during the pandemic, Enumclaw indicates a sense of community with Jimbo Demos, as if one is listening to the music live. It is a very positive addition that bookends the EP well, hopefully promising more music to come.