Treat your ears to the ever so joyful debut album FOMO by The Vaughns. The album, as explained by the band, is about the ‘transition period between exiting college, and entering adulthood,’ which is completely accurate. This is a very relatable album for anyone in their 20s. Being in that age gap myself, I couldn’t help but laugh and nod my head in agreeance countless times whilst listening to the album and the lyrics. Each song has a uniqueness about it, yet keeps a steady indie-rock passion throughout.
Opening with a lengthy surf-rock instrumental, “Learning To Surf” sets the electric guitar in the spotlight. It’s a tone that demonstrates that even though they are a quirky and joyful group, they still mean business. “Kowabunga” keeps the surf rock sound flowing, and I can most certainly picture myself driving down the Great Ocean Road cruising to these two songs.
“50%” is the single that was released a month before the album’s launch. The song full of punchy beats, including a tropical guitar riff, emphasizing again on the surf-rock vibe, however with the addition of brass instruments it generates a big band sound. It’s exciting to see a young band create music that is unique to themselves yet approachable to a large demographic. The meaning behind the song covers the issue of the 50% divorce rate in America and how that may impact millennials approach to marriage and love. It is insightful yet up beat for a song that covers such a sobering topic.
Some songs surprised me with a burst of ensembles that take the song in different directions, as heard in “Coffee Sundae” which incorporates a blues flare throughout. It’s a pleasant addition to the album and reveals the diversity they can offer.
As I said earlier, this album is highly relatable to people in their 20s. “TV” and “Bring Your Kids To Work Day” share some lyrics that I am sure will engage with many. In particular, listen to the intro of “Bring Your Kids To Work Day”. If you can’t associate with any of the lyrics, then you, my friend, are the minority that have their shit together before the age of 30. Besides the lyrics, “Bring Your Kids To Work Day” is a song with force. It’s sharp and heavy compared to the other songs of the album. Take particular note of the bridge; lead singer Anna Lies presents the power and rawness of her voice and lets loose.
This is the type of album that installs happiness because you’re able to listen to music that kicks your bad mood out the door. There is a constant supply of marvelous guitar riffs (special mention to the opening of “Stiff”, listen to it loud). It is impressive to see how Lies’ voice can move from sounding friendly and cute to rough and direct. The diversity between Lies and the band can showcase the contrasts of mixing heavier music with a higher, not so predictable voice. Be sure to have a listen to the album, I am sure you will have FOMO if you don’t.