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Guerilla Toss - Famously Alive Music Album Reviews

Guerilla Toss - Famously Alive Music Album Reviews
The trio’s latest is a beautiful mess of squelchy psych-pop—emphasis on pop—where effervescent instrumentals soundtrack an earnest and hard-earned lust for life.

On Guerilla Toss’ fifth album, Famously Alive, frontperson Kassie Carlson sings about enjoying every day to the fullest after a years-long opiate addiction that landed her in the hospital for weeks and persuaded her to get sober. The music reflects her shift toward not just surviving but thriving, and it feels like the culmination of a long-brewing transformation for Guerilla Toss, now a New York trio after years in Boston as a five-piece known for earsplitting live shows and head-spinning studio recordings. Famously Alive is a beautiful mess of squelchy psych-pop—emphasis on pop—that feels in conversation with the band’s abrasive, dissonant past: As Guerilla Toss turn a new page musically, Carlson turns one of her own.

On 2019’s What Would the Odd Do? EP, Carlson chronicled her recovery and Guerilla Toss began to soften their harshest, skronkiest musical layers. Famously Alive takes that path to its logical conclusion. These melody-forward songs arrive with crystal-clear fidelity and sugary guitars and synths, but their frantic rhythm and psychedelic tint connect them to the band’s past work. Carlson’s newly steady vocals (she took voice lessons as she wrote the album) transform simple sentiments into earnest revelations about how good it feels just to be. When she sings “You’re famous/Famously alive” on the title track, she holds the notes mid-register, with none of her signature shrieking. Her band, which flanks her with arcade-like synths and ecstatic percussion, sounds just as steadfast.

Famously Alive is jam-packed with Day-Glo cheerleader chants dedicated to celebrating existence right now, today. On “Live Exponential,” against gleaming electronics and harp arpeggios by LEYA’s Marilu Donovan, Carlson sings, “I’m special! You’re special! Live exponential!” On “Wild Fantasy,” Guerilla Toss find a space between the anxious tempo of 2016’s Eraser Stargazer and the stark hallucininations of 2018’s Twisted Crystal with bursts of power chords and synth sparkles that hit like a sax solo. The glittery stomp goes hand-in-hand with Carlson’s excitement as she chants the titular phrase: She sounds elated just to wake up every morning.

Motivational-speaker lyricism can be tough to pull off, but Famously Alive’s exuberant, squishy instrumentals—think Merriweather Post Pavilion with a splash of hyperpop—prevent it from ringing hollow. The sound, far poppier than any past Guerilla Toss release, exudes the same abundant, genuine positivity that Carlson’s lyrics do; the music alone glows brightly enough to impart her newfound perspective, though things do briefly cool down on “Happy Me.” “Each day a celebration/I am a radiant sun/All things a fascination/Happy me, happy me, happy me, happy me,” Carlson coos through a thick vocal filter. Her voice gradually fades into the background as the refrain segues into the outro, but it sounds like it’s ringing out forever.

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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Guerilla Toss - Famously Alive Music Album Reviews Guerilla Toss - Famously Alive Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Monday, April 04, 2022 Rating: 5

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