Bloodlines EP

As the first act signed to Rory Records, Max Bemis’ Equal Vision imprint, Talhart (née Marksmen) have a lot to live up to. Bemis is famously known for his much-revered contributions to the current scene, meaning there’s a serious weight to his name when he chooses to attach it to a new band. For the most part, Tallhart live up to expectations. On these six songs, the Florida quartet trade in brooding but swelling indie-rock, at times calling to mind Manchester Orchestra ca. I’m Like A Virgin Losing A Child. Vocalist Matt  Segallos is decidedly less gruff and shouty than Andy Hull, but his timbre carries the same distinctive quality—most notably on “Drunk Kids,” the disc’s standout track. Bloodlines' crowning achievement is largely its warm tones and seamless arrangements that exude a sense of comfort, charm and familiarity. There’s a straightforward simplicity to these songs that makes them impressive, but the band dress them up with instrumentation that makes things a little more interesting. They envelop “Fever (Sister Of Mine)” with delayed guitar leads and lush instrumentals that sound plucked from the Explosions In The Sky playbook, while “Wolves” is a bit more playful, a rollicking take on folk rock that gives the EP some upbeat energy in the midst of gloomier material. Still, the pounding drums and slinky guitar riffs of “Holy War” show the band aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty when needed.

Rory/Equal Vision http://www.equalvision.com

“Drunk Kids”