‘Mandals’ EP Artwork by Veronica Mitrano

‘Mandals’ EP Artwork by Veronica Mitrano

Calling East Hampton, Connecticut home, Garbage Dad came out swinging with their indie, emo, pop punk-ish tunes in 2018. The band’s members are vocalist and guitarist Brandon Cunningham and drummer Adam Mount. Their new EP Mandals is out now.

The five song EP is instrumentally very well balanced. With its Modern Baseball and Tigers Jaw-leaning sound, it packs a heartfelt punch.

Opening track, “Fucked Out Of Luck” sets the stage for an obviously going-to-be-emotional EP. With its electric guitar openings, and overall fuzzy undertones, it comes across as being pretty catchy. This track along with others on the EP, sounds to be influenced by Brendan Lukens and Jake Ewald of earlier mentioned Modern Baseball. Are the similarities bad? Absolutely not.

Mandals definitely shines in the regard that its instrumental backings are strong. “Life in the Hamptons” and “Meat Sweats” contain phenomenal guitar and drum segments. Sadly, however, the guitar and drums take the foreground instead of the vocals at points throughout this entire EP.

A nice tone down of the instrumentals during some of the heavier vocal portions would have definitely served this EP well. The vocals get lost beneath the roaring drums and strings to the point where they cannot be understood. Even so, when the guitar and drums let up, Cunningham proves to be quite the vocalist.

“Peter Parker” is arguably the clearest and best produced track on the EP. With a sound similar to Bowling for Soup’s, it is easy to sing along to. It is upbeat and a little nostalgic even. Cunningham sings, “I feel like Peter Parker, except a bit more awkward.” It is just one of those heartbroken tracks that oddly makes you smile much like “1985.”

The fantastically sad, yet upbeat EP is finished off with “Ramone Threw a Rock at Me, We’re Still Friends Though.” With its amazing opening, it slows things down. Cunningham’s emotions definitely shine through on this closing track. His vocals come across a bit stronger on this one as well – showing off his voice that is more muffled on earlier tracks.

To wrap this up, Mandals should not be slept on. Garbage Dad is a band to watch, and they have substantial potential.

Listen now on Spotify and all other major platforms.

Standout Tracks: “Peter Parker” and “Ramone Threw a Rock at Me, We’re Still Friends Though”

Rating: 8/10


Freelance Writer and Photographer