Friday, May 17, 2013

Free Friday: Paint Branch - "I Wanna Live"

Named after a stream that connects to a Maryland river, Paint Branch is the new project from John Davis (Title Tracks, Georgie James) and Chris Richards (Ris Paul Ric) formerly of defunct D.C. based post-punk favorites Q And Not U.  Their excellent debut album, I Wanna Live was self-released as a free digital download on their Bandcamp page this past January.  This new project marks the first time the two of them have played together since their breakup and offers a slight departure from Q’s danceable frenetic energy and punk spirit.  In its place are cascading guitars, 60’s pop vocal melodies and hints of 70’s classic rock and California folk-pop that falls more in line with their respective solo releases over the last few years. 

The opener, “Brighton Beach” features thumping drums, cyclical guitars and some close knit vocal harmonies.  The title track, “I Wanna Live” follows with an upbeat yet loping rhythm, jangly guitars and a bittersweet vocal melody.  “Run” is built on a sparkling guitar arpeggio with soaring harmonies that sounds like a long lost Elliott Smith outtake.  The piano-led “Take Your Time” is sung by Davis and stands out with dueling, FM radio-like guitar harmonies and a bright, catchy chorus.  The Richards-sung “Vanishing Act” stands out with a bouncy rhythm and steady acoustic guitar strumming.  Another standout on the twelve track album is “Witnesses” with its sly funk.                 
Since the demise of Q And Not U, Davis and Richards have certainly matured and with their latest project, they have proven that their songwriting has always been rock solid and it’s just great to hear them together again. 

Stream/Download I Wanna Live here:    

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