Easter Island "Better Things"
Hailing out of Athens Georgia, Easter Island is a five piece band playing around in The National's ball park, although just now they're only aping the big boys of intense emotional leftfield Americana. They also claim a little of Coldplay's turf, and if that's what you want then yes, I can hear that in there too, but I'd prefer to say there's a bit of Explosions in the Sky kicking around. Easter Island are a band of muso's - everything is carefully put together - you'll never find the knife and fork transposed on their dinner table. Brittle but precise angsty indie rock - I know what I mean - I think you know what I mean, and damn it's easy to say, but it's hard to pull off.
Their five track EP, 'Better Things', kicks around the post-college mid-twenties work isn't so great first big relationship-burnout vibe, but where, say The National might take similar themes and grab you by both shoulders and shake you violently whilst Matt Berninger falls apart in front of you, Easter Island's vocalist Asher Payne is a bit needier. On the title track he sings detachedly "Wear me, try me on, wear me out, but do it kindly". 'Kinkadia' hints at a more aggressive side, and that darkness violence and madness exists even within a perfect Thomas Kinkade suburb populated with perfect families and perfect children and a screaming voice that just wants "five minutes of peace".
'Second Handers' plays on all that is good about Easter Island in a long languorous deconstruction of a relationship where at least one partner has settled for less: "your fortune came in the form of a job well done"; saddled with a possessive partner "she'll destroy you, she'll want you all at once"; a gnawing ache that is a sense of underachievement - "you're a dilettante of the intellect"; and finally the realisation that "you are a second hander, second rate at best" that nags continually at the ego. Whilst Easter Island do a good turn of tip-toeing around on icicle stilts, fuzzy guitar and perpetually suppressed percussion eternally striving to break free from their shackles of convention it does, most of the time, remain constrained. 'Better Things' is listenable enough, but it needs that ounce of emotional fire to push it up to greatness.