After about twenty seconds into Book of Shred’s music video “Straight Up,” it’s easy to see that Robbie Cohen and incoming ASU junior Colin Denker don’t take themselves too seriously. Clad in brightly colored mismatched sweatbands, sunglasses, tanks and short-shorts, the duo quite literally hop around to display what I can only assume are their “special occasion” dance moves.
Their music is another story—obviously something they do take very seriously. And rightfully so. The “Straight Up” music video off their debut album “Nobody’s Home” feels bold thematically. Instead of settling for the moody, please-respect-me-as-an-artist pretentiousness that in many ways would have been a much safer bet, these two do justice to their album through offering so much more: personality. Their album, like their video, doesn’t have anything “debut” about it. In fact, it’s already featured on ASU’s beloved radio station, The Blaze.
The 11 tracks on “Nobody’s Home” vary from sweet harmonic bliss and guitar riffs in “Turning Red” (a personal favorite) to a more aggressive and heartfelt “We Were There.” Self-proclaimed indie rockers—the good kind—their sound ranges from mellowed-out like Band of Horses to reminiscent of the upbeat and insanely catchy “Pretty. Odd.” album from Panic! At the Disco. (Side note—I mean that as a massive compliment. Anyone familiar with “Pretty. Odd.” knows it’s one underrated, hell of an indie album.)
Cohen and Denker’s album meshes seamlessly from track to track, and closes beautifully with the instrumental “Curtains.” And, if my ears serve me correctly, the last half of the song is the sound of pouring rain. Needless to say, these guys tackle their debut album fearlessly and with heavy doses of experimentation and personality. Take a listen, buy the album and give it the love it deserves. It’s good, I promise.
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