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Oxford Collapse “Remember the Night Parties” Review

Published in Blog, Culture Bully. Tags: , .

Whenever a band is labeled as transitioning from independent to label there comes, for one reason or another, a discrepancy in reputability. In the situation of Sub Pop and Oxford Collapse, however, it seems a perfect match for both sides, on the surface, without anyone really scratching their head wondering where the street-cred has gone. Following up some of the most popular underground rock anthems comes a band ready to break out from independent monotony and reach for whatever spotlight which may be available. Unfortunately, whether it be timing of release or simply lack of variation in the band’s song process, Remember the Night Parties leaves its listeners confused as to whether the jump to a label has actually helped the band realize something bigger and brighter.

To be fair to the Collapse, the tracks do not sound awful or polished in comparison to the band’s previous efforts. The band still wreaks of toned down guitar sputters and doesn’t shy away from mimicking previous albums’ sounds, dripping of under-production. But for those who are familiar with the band, fans even, a question slowly comes to mind as the songs glide into the mid-stages of the album; where did the art-rocking go?

Not to say that there isn’t a solid level of high-strung rock ‘n roll overtones to every song on Remember The Night Parties, but previous releases such as “If It Dies In Peoria Then Who The Hell Cares?” stood as a diversion to the band’s consistent sound, pronouncing the Oxford Collapse to be a group who isn’t afraid to release music that is contrastingly inauspicious and crass.

Ultimately though, the music is still good. It’s what any listener should have expected from the band whether or not it jumped at an opportunity to sign with a label. In all fairness Sub Pop still holds one of the boldest rosters in modern music and serves as a perfect home for the band that, in all honesty, doesn’t support mainstream ears. But the album comes at a time when it doesn’t stand out, and could easily be overlooked by the majority of music fan, not already familiar with its songs. Either way, Remember The Night Parties boasts a solid eleven song set that starts slow and ends with one of its most amusingly paced songs “In Your Volcano,” showing that the band is not merely looking forward, but looking back, too, ensuring that they don’t abandon any listeners along the way.

[This post was first published by Culture Bully.]