By Jacob Katel
By Laurie Charles
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Abel Folgar
By Kat Bein
By Jacob Katel
The Waterford Landing's 2004 self-titled full-length debut was refreshing, in what was then a local sweltering sea of shit populated with bad bass, half-ass hip-hop, uninspired rock and roll, and Atari-produced reggaeton. Scene veterans Richard Rippe (vocals, synths, bass), Ed Matus (guitars, synths, vox), and Alex Caso (synths, keys, vox, looks) were a promising trio. However, for personal, professional, and time reasons, the recorded and live output of the band slowed to a slug's pace. Still, they have used the interim to take their already well-crafted sound to the next level.
The Bullet Park EP is a five-song, 25-minute record full of the band's signature psychedelic New Wave, pop-sensible hooks, oozing oohs and ahhs, industrial abrasion, punk rock know-how, and ambient soundscapes. (Oh, and cover art by acclaimed graphic novel artist Dan Goldman of Shooting War fame.) The opening track is a gorgeous instrumental titled "Theme from 'Through the Night,'" which might or might not have something to do with Takehiko Ito's Outlaw Star series. Either way, it's an extremely danceable number. "Getbent" is a Factory-style tour de force with glimmery moments that shine through the distortion, which sets up the following broody "Folksong #1." The macabre "Laserbeam" is the closest these guys get to happy-happy joy-joy pop music, before delving, finally, into the title track.
The Waterford Landing continues to show great artistic promise and integrity. And although the local music milieu has vastly improved since the trio first appeared, younger local bands should take note here regarding craftsmanship and devotion.