by Kris Handel (@khandel84)
Purple, Green and Yellow is the sophomore record from Anamon, a 3 piece from upstate New York led by Ana Emily Monaco. The band tread in the direction of country tinged jagged pop with varying tempos and echo-y and vibrato-soaked guitar squalls. Monaco’s vocals carry a dusky twang that suits the approach and adds a richness and depth that lingers in the ear canals of the listener. Anamon express their influences in a cohesive manner that leads to a steady foundation for some charming songwriting.
“No Friends” and “Exactly What I Like” open the record with quite a 1-2 punch of early-90s clamoring indie rock (read Dino. Jr regarding the former). “No Friends” zips along with jangly and crunching guitars and pummeling rolling drum fills, provided by Aaron Mika, over Monaco’s full-throated singing for a bit of a raucous anthem. The latter combines wiggling guitar over a sauntering rhythm as Monaco spins a tale of giving in to bad decision making and working for what you want. Both songs carry a sort of weight that works well and the interplay between the band is tight but with a playful streak.
“Magician” has a darker and seductive slow folk-y pacing to it with Monaco putting in a vocal performance that hauntingly hangs in the atmosphere. “In Three” swings along with wavy and repeating guitar that sparkles and twangs in between tempo shifts which eventually give way to an unexpected avant-esque sax break that comes bleating out of nowhere. The song explodes towards the end into a clamoring of instruments that provides a well-timed release of tension Anamon prove themselves adept at sweeping, twanging, landscapes peppered with the occasional keyboard or pedal steel for added textures.
Anamon are a band that are very fluid in what they do and on Purple, Green and Yellow have a record that finds a pocket and makes itself a home. There’s a warmth that comes through the haze here and even at moments of doubt or darkness there is a joviality that is endearing. This record is a worthy addition for any fans of well-crafted jangly indie-folk with a personality, and Monaco’s assured, and hefty vocals are a joy to hear. There’s a quirkiness here in both the song-craft and performances that is wholly enjoyable and akin to a breath of fresh air.