Emilia – Englewood, Eudora EP
Record Label: Rockin’ The Leslie Records (umm, unsigned)
Release Date: August 24, 2007
Goodness, I really needed a record like Englewood, Eudora. As school heats up and my stress level hits catastrophic levels, it’s nice to sit down with an album and chillax while sipping some Natty Ice. This light and earthy compilation of indie-pop songs have a powerful, calming effect, due largely to John Gudenzi’s wonderful voice. Each time I start to happily doze, Emilia do another fantastic thing that elongates my musical bliss. Englewood, Eudora puts itself in a special category, as it not only pleases my ears, but also serves a function previously served by multiple medications. No prescription needed, thankfully.
The album opens with “Radical Republicans, And Self-Improvement Speeches,” a piano-filled number rife with handclaps(!!) and an optimistic message. “Looking Up In G*” begins the country theme throughout Englewood, Eudora. A twangy electric guitar hides behind the rugged acoustic guitar and intoxicating vocal melodies. As the hoe down-worthy electric guitar solo kicks in, Emilia should firmly plant themselves on your list of “Unsigned Bands to Watch and Brag About Knowing Later.” The last time I saw my roommate, I laughed in his face for being so naïve. He punched me pretty hard soon after.
“The Absolution” makes the previously mentioned songs look like speedy rockers. The track is exceptionally simple, as Gudenzi (who writes all the songs) lets his impressive tenor lead the way. But he is the only thing shimmering. This song should only be performed in a run-down bar with a single spotlight placed squarely on him. The drums appear midway through, and rather than pushing forward, they seem to make the song march in place. With no need to play catch-up, the listener can truly enjoy a weathered and deceptively dirty love song.
Much like Emilia’s career is sure to grow, “Hold On Two Minutes” starts low-key and slowly burgeons into an acoustic melodyfest. Gudenzi is as delicate as ever with his lyrics and delivery, while the airy backing chorus brings the freedom of an untamed landscape. By simplifying all aspects of their sound, Emilia feel somewhat fresher than most other emotional and slightly environmental pop groups. And although this six song EP won’t last me the whole day, it will be great for my shorter stressful episodes. Take a deep breath, eat a whole gallon of ice cream, and listen to Englewood, Eudora. Now that’s relief.
Recommended If You Like: The Format, Josh Ritter, copious amounts of fresh air, David Shultz!!!, being bi-partisan about everything