Off Road Minivan – ‘Spiral Gaze’

By Emma Greveson

Recently signed to Tooth & Nail, Off Road Minivan are a rock band from Red Rock in New York and their EP ‘Spiral Gaze’ is something you must not miss.

Title track ‘Spiral Gaze’ starts with a heart-felt solo guitar riff with plenty of reverb, and the short sustain before the riff repeats feels like a metaphorical pause for thought. And although it begins delicately, there is consistent progression throughout. During the chorus there is more drive, with electric guitars, dynamic drumming, and expressive vocals from Ryan Tuck O’Leary. Lyrics like “see right through my face, don’t notice that I’m gone” and “I have been missing for a while” suggests that this track holds deep meaning; a feeling also portrayed through the way that the instruments are played throughout.

‘Light up the Room’ also makes a mellow start thanks to a glistening guitar riff, although the drums stand out as the dominant musical element with Evan Garcia Renart’s drumming being the main influence for the feel and the motion of this track. At first, it feels slightly like the track is lacking in flow, but it soon develops into a much more driven chorus with a riding rhythm.

Elsewhere, ‘Glow’ starts off with a focus on O’Leary’s vocals and some distorted guitar. This track is much more dynamic than the previous two; Renart’s drumming adds more intensity and the guitarists are dominant and exciting throughout.

’17 Years’ closes the EP, and adds contrast to the other songs in part thanks to a drums only introduction. Off Road Minivan find time to throw in a catchy chorus, and the call and response style of the vocals is another example of their creativity. Produced and written to a very high standard, it is clear that ‘Spiral Gaze’ was created with care and passion that Off Road Minivan should rightly be proud of. It would be frivolous of all of us as music fans if we weren’t to recognise this as an admirable addition to the current alternative-rock scene.

EMMA GREVESON

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