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Low Beam / Press

“Low-Beam released Charge of the Light Brigade this year, after 5 years in the making! Originally started in 2004, the band features Jaimee Weatherbee, Rich Freitas, Rich Martin, and Charles Stankewich. The album itself was produced by none other than Michael Deming, who produced some big name stuff (Silver Jews, Lilys, Pernice Brothers) and was released earlier this year on Cosmodemonic Telegraph. So it all sounds great on paper, but how does the band sound? They sound fantastic, really reminiscent of late-80s shoegaze bands, but with a bit harder edge to them. There’s wildly distorted sweeping guitars, early-60s keyboards, and fantastic boy-girl vocals. The whole album sounds like it’s been worked on and tweaked and perfected for a very long time, and the end result are immaculate pop songs that are deeply rooted in their influences but still sound fresh and unique. I’ve been spinning this one since I got my hands on it, and it still sounds great.”

“There is indeed sparkling sonic clarity on “Charge of the Light Brigade,” though it wouldn’t mean as much if the songs weren’t so good. But they are: The band balances these 11 tunes among warm guitars, vivid keyboard lines and stand-out melodies layered in prismatic vocal harmonies from guitarist Charles James & keyboard player Jaimee Weatherbee. They sing together with easy grace, sharing and alternating lead parts on the verses and turning the choruses into soaring vocal showcases, particularly on “Skullcrusher” & “Fathom,” where their voices ride a wave of bright, jangling guitars. There’s a touch of ‘80s shoegaze influence in the gently chugging guitars on “Airstream” and the dreamy bass line from Rich Martin that rises and falls on “Parabellum,” and James and Weatherbee sing a melody on “Tuffy Rhodes” with a gentle, sing-song lullaby quality that contrasts with a series of jagged, roiling guitar breaks.”

“Low-Beam, Charge of the Light Brigade (Cosmodemonic Telegraph /Mystic Music Archive, low-beam.com). Hearing a new full-length album from Low-Beam two years after they went on a performing hiatus only confirms how confident and expertly poppy their melodies are, how easy it is for the listener to climb inside the droney fuzz and buzz of the guitar and organ, how fresh and electrically-charged the band’s dynamic sounds. What’s more, its release is timed well: The band’s sound, all reverby male-female vocals, krautrocky rhythmic pulses and ‘60s-pop-with-much-more-overdrive guitar leads, is at least 10 times hipper now than it was when they were most active. There’s little stylistic variation amongst these 11 songs, but fans of moderately-rocking dream-pop will likely a) not mind much, and b) find the band’s capacity for finding new melodic twists in their formula satisfying enough for the whole album to fly by.”

Brian LaRue - New Haven Advocate