Record Review: The Can’t Nots

The Can’t Nots
Applesauce EP
Providence, RI

“Like them apples?”

It’s hard to get a read on the Can’t Nots’ EP Applesauce.  Over a five-song sample size, Naomi Wilkinson’s band could either be deliberately carving out some interesting genre-shucking territory, or simply struggling to nail down an identity.  This hard rock three-piece is a three-fold contradiction.  And depending on which side of that fence you’re on, these contrasts are either strengths or weaknesses.

LISTEN NOW: “Applesauce”

[audio:http://performermag.com/wp-content/uploads/01_Applesauce.mp3|titles=01_Applesauce]

They sound more indebted to grunge but cite Dusty Springfield and Dave Matthews amongst their influences.  Their recorded songs don’t have the energy of a live track, but their shows are by all accounts electric.  They have the sonic aesthetic of garage rock, but not the easily accessible choruses.

Despite a minimalist approach, it’s amazing how the band can stay uncommitted to a genre.  The guitar riffs are extremely repetitive but the groove never drives towards a garage rock hook of a chorus.  The chords are heavy and somewhat dark, but don’t have the angst of grunge.  The question for the listener is whether these are interesting artistic choices or simply omissions.

Whichever the case, it’s an interesting space to be in, and the Can’t Nots have room to grow into it. (Self-Released)

Produced by The Can’t Nots and Mike Lamantia

Engineered and Mastered by Mike Lamantia

www.thecantnots.com

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