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Album Review: The High Dials – In the A.M. Wilds

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The fifth and latest studio album by The High Dials, a Montreal-based indie band, explores familiar territory by mixing pop and electronica with folk inspired melodies. The album successfully creates a distinct atmosphere while providing more traditional listeners with grounded and catchy melodies, despite suffering from a few subpar tracks.

Adopting low-key vocals and computerized beats, the album bears a marked stylistic resemblance to The Strokes, with the occasional sprinkling of MGMT for when the tracks take a more psychedelic turn. Most of the songs find their strength in the distinct melodies, which gradually vitalize their more stylistic elements. It is also impressive to see how well many of the tracks meld together conceptually as the album leaps from more pop-centered tracks like “Yestergraves” to acoustic focused songs like “Flower on the Vines.”

This is not to say that the album is without its faults. Some of the tracks leave a lot to be desired, particularly the dreary “Evil Twin,” which, despite a somewhat pleasant guitar riff, is plagued by bored sounding vocals and lazy, subpar lyrics.

That being said, on the whole In the A.M. Wilds constitutes a solid musical experience that has gained The High Dials at least one new fan.

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