I was listening to Strange Neighbors new EP Party of None, enjoying the first few tracks, minding my own business. I had assigned it to an upcoming ‘breaking news’ post, largely on the basis of my positive reaction to the rollicking opening cut “Whoa is Me.” I love the slashing guitars and new wave Natalie Merchant vocal. I think track 2 “Skeleton Boy” is another winner, though here the vocal tipped more toward Amy Rigby in her prime. But I was not prepared for track three, with its stark opening guitar chords and arresting verses that give scant hint of what is to come. Then “Hotline Psychic” hits the chorus like a rush of adrenaline that just goes on and on, with lyrics that are hilarious and oh so cutting. There’s a febrile energy at work in this song that will have you hitting replay over and over again. Frankly, track 3 stalled my encounter with this EP because I knew I had to feature “Hotline Psychic” as a ‘should-be hit single’ pronto. Now, as a bonus, the two remaining tracks on this EP also keep the poppy rock dynamism going, particularly “Window Watching.”
So click on “Hotline Psychic” and see if you don’t agree, it’s a should be monster hit. And then stay for the rest of Party of None, it’s one of those too-good-to-be-true EPs – as in, total enjoyment.
You can check out Party of None and Strange Neighbors’ excellent back catalogue at this Bandcamp party stop.
Photo fragment from “Hotline Psychic” 45 cover designed by band member Zach.