In the 90's before Pro Tools rigs were as common as keyboards, the garage band was a big deal. Young, aspiring bands would head into a garage and work on making music. They didn't necessarily do it with dreams of moving up and playing the club circuit, or winning some radio station's battle of the bands contest, they did it because they loved playing music. Since Pro Tools became as popular as it is that's something that's been lost. People make music in their bedrooms with computers and advanced equipment and it's polished as they record it. They don't have to run it through a lot of filters to get the sound to where they want it to be, and if they do they have it on hand. It's processed as they make it. There are some bands out there who might use some of that equipment to record but they still want the music to sound as pure as possible. Enter California's Vices and their debut album The Edge of Done.
Vices is a band made up of just a bunch of normal dudes. They all have day jobs that are considerably more boring than getting together to create music. The band is led by Kirk Hamilton on vocals and Erik Homsher on guitar and backup vocals. Their sound is reminiscent of some of the great garage bands of the 90s. Vices influenced by some grunge music but it's clear they're also influenced by some of the rock that was popular in the 80s. The Edge of Done features Homsher and Hamilton predominantly, but it also features some outstanding production done by Raj Makwana. Makwana did some brilliant things on The Edge of Done. He implemented some basic keyboard effects and expanded on them creating some ambient effects to start and close the record. He also got the best out of everyone in the band recording, whether that's from himself, Homsher, Hamilton, or the younger Homsher on drums. He brought out the best of them while allowing to have their playing be what it is; no more, no less. Hamilton's vocals aren't great on every song, the same can be said for Homsher's. But they are authentic. For a band like this, I'd consider that to be more important. That authentic vein runs through everything on The Edge of Done. The lyrics aren't always perfect but they're always real. The songwriting, it could use a few different things here and there, but you know that these guys created this album because of the flaws are there. It's real music.
The Edge of Done is worth a listen. There will be some songs that you'll be into on this record, but yes there are a few worth skipping too, and you usually know which ones they are right off the bat. Still, you have to give these guys credit for creating something that's authentically garage rock, even if it's not perfect.