I know it came out a while ago, but Renaissance hasn’t exactly been around very long (we’re on week 3 here), and no self-respecting review/blog could skip such an essential EP.
There’s something in the air when GQ performs. Some kind of ethereal energy that straightens every neck, fixates every eye, contracts every arrector pili, and stiffens every knee in the room. You won’t find kids staring at their cell phones or giving bad vibes when GQ has the floor. No one can look away. Maybe it’s Huntz’s wild-animal drumming, or Joe Bennett’s impossible basslines, or Killian’s angular, complex rhythm chords. The only thing that’s certain about the Quarrel is that they’re the tightest, most rhythmic indie rock trio to ever grace Buffalo. Technically speaking alone, there’s enough musicianship on this EP to tip Berklee upside down. But even before the musicianship, the composition is mind-boggling enough: tempo changes, odd-rhythms, and ear-tingling melodies all weave and warp and twist into one of the best EPs Buffalo has ever seen. With as much dance as its darkness, “Sam” walks the fine, fine line between the melancholy and the joyous. It’s like being miserable but rejoicing in the miracle that you have the capacity to feel such heavy emotion. Like Joy Division and Interpol before them, The Gentleman’s Quarrel effortlessly combine the tones of despair with the backbeats of celebration. “Sam” is an honoring of life, even the terrible things that happen in it. And we can all find ourselves in Sam.
I could honestly write for hours about why this EP is so undeniably wonderful, but it might just be better to let you find out for yourself. “Sam” will be your new best friend by the end of the day for sure.
Recommended for fans of: Interpol, Two Door Cinema Club