PAIRED UP PROMISE Kid’s Gotta Do.
There's no shortage of emo-influenced, WARPED Tour rock bands in these parts. Some of the area's best work (and most success) has come from this little pocket, with the likes of Sparks the Rescue, Too Late the Hero, Pinsky, the Killing Moon, and plenty more.
Kid's Gotta Do, who've popped up out of seemingly nowhere with The Parade, are generation next, clearly influenced by bands like the above and doing many of the same things, but broader in scope than many of them, likely because they're still a very young and unfocused band. Or, well, duo, really. David Lyden and Matt Kalicky have been making music together since before they went to Deering High School and they've done a nice job, with the help of recording engineer Noah Cole and a couple of guest instrumentalists, in putting together a full-throated album that's catching people's attention because of some very nice hooks and a feel for pop-rock choruses.
For no good reason at all, and without meaning this as a put-down, they remind me of Wham!. It's something about their enthusiasm.
When they're referencing going out to party and their parents finding their stash in an adrenaline-charged chorus for "Johnnie Walker" (the obvious single here), it's easy to get caught up. They've got the necessary dynamics between verse and chorus to get the blood moving and their young vocals fit the material. The quick delivery in "Look Now" has the same kind of energy, like a kid squirming in his chair at the back of the room.
Sometimes, I just don't believe them, though. "Charades" sounds like it would be a blast live, and Lyden and Kalicky show off some of their resonant harmonies in the pre-chorus, with an excellent soprano part and a reference to turning up 94.3, but the screamo stuff in the finish just doesn't work at all. Falls completely flat. Other times, they just reach for too much. No producer should have allowed the falsetto in "Streetcar" to stand.
Potential counts for plenty, though, and the finishing tracks here, "The Last Song" (oh! Except it's not really last!) and "Five-O," are really catchy, with an especially nice follow-on harmony part in the latter. There's definitely enough here to leave me intrigued with what might happen once they put a full band together.
Sam Pfeifle can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
THE PARADE | Released by Kid's Gotta Do | facebook.com/kidsgottado
CORRECTION In an earlier version of this review of the Kid's Gotta Do album, Noah Cole was incorrectly identified as the album's producer. He was the recording engineer; the album was self-produced. When the review said the falsetto should not have made it past a producer, it was incorrect to imply that that was Cole's fault.