CD Review: Skypiper, Troubledoer EP…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , — @ 12:48 pm May 23, 2013

by Tim McMahan,

Skypiper, Troubledoer EP (self-release, 2013)

Skypiper, Troubledoer EP (self-release, 2013)

I don’t know where Skypiper fits into the mosaic of music styles that make up the Omaha / Lincoln / Nebraska music scene. They’re not part of Saddle Creek, aren’t involved in the city’s burgeoning dirty garage rock world, don’t fit into the folk/Americana scene and certainly aren’t dance / EDM. To my knowledge, they’re also not aligned with the city’s Christian rock scene.

And so, I’m left scratching my head as to where they fit in. Do we have to put labels for everything? No, we don’t, but it makes it easier for lazy music journalists to describe music.

I don’t know how to describe the new Skypiper EP Troubledoer other than to say it’s as good an indie-pop recording as I’ve heard this year, just straight-up hook-filled songwriting and tight musicianship. Quite a surprise considering their forgettable 2011 full-length debut.

The highlight of this new 4-song collection is track 3, “Free Spirit Woman,” a cute little rock shuffle with a plethora of clever lines that paint the portrait of a local scenester who (thinks) she’s cooler than you and may well be — a woman so free that she doesn’t have time to deal with her own problems. I think I’ve met this person before (Haven’t we all?).

Frontman Graham Burkum has a crisp, unadorned rock voice thankfully lacking any affected accoutrements. This is free-and-easy stuff without a hint of angst and/or cynicism, which will instantly relegate it outside of the sardonic audience that follows today’s indie or punk or anything else with an edge. There’s nothing dangerous about Skypiper. That doesn’t mean there’s nothing interesting about their music. It’s pure feel-good pop that begs you to sing along.  Add a super-crisp recording and you’ve got a promising new player in an already crowded scene, one that stands outside of the usual categories.

Skypiper celebrates the release of Troubledoer Saturday night at The Waiting Room with Twinsmith and Lawrence band Cowboy Indian Bear.

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