FILE UNDER: Best-Bud Power Pop
WHAT'S DIFFERENT: The Obsessives were born out of friendship: BFFs Nick Bairatchnyi and Jackson Mansfield were two 15-year-olds attempting to craft complicated blues-rock. Two years later, they found a comfortable home in emo, releasing their 2015 debut Heck No, Nancy, a sound somewhere between Modern Baseball’s balladic moments and Braid’s biggest hits. Here, the band have sped things up, playing with power pop and shimmery harmonies with newfound effectiveness.
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE: It’s rare that a band change their sound so drastically with each recording while maintaining their identity. The Obsessives is their best release to date because of its youthful Weezer-like hooks. At its best moments, the LP is indie rock that’s free of the pretension that follows—which makes for a fun release.
OUR PICK: “If You Really Love Me”