Refill is Umbrella Bed’s new EP, and it showcases a mature and polished act. The EP begins with Wish That It Would Stop, a sonic assault that recalls the hazy alternative of the early nineties before the band shifts gears and takes a Less Than Jake meets Reel Big Fish approach to ska. There is a heavier end to this track that provides listeners with a wholly unique experience. The constituent elements of Umbrella Bed work together to create something cohesive and utterly ready for rotation. Of particular note during this effort is the dynamic that is created between the horns and the vocals; the multi-part vocals that are dominant during the chorus allow the track to rocket to the end. Two Tone Monster takes up the standards of acts like Fugazi and And Out Come the Wolves-era Rancid; the high energy of the vocals spins the track in a B-52s meets Wall of Voodoo way. The cherry on top of Two Tone Monster has to be the sizzling horn work that takes the place of a guitar solo; the band comes back together for a bit of straight-forward fury that would be at home in a NYHC pit. The aural anarchy that is heard during the track allows Umbrella Bed to slide effortlessly into the album’s final track, Dub Away.
Dub Away closes out Refill and provides an emphatic exclamation point to the EP; here’s to hoping that Umbrella Bed is able to recreate the same high momentum on a subsequent (and hopefully full-length) recording. Check out their website for more information about the band’s history, news, and a variety of pictures and videos.
Top Tracks: Wish That It Would Stop, Got It Wrong Now
Umbrella Bed Refill CD Review