Tedder

August Apologist

What It's Worth

3 pulses

This is probably what they mean by “easy listening.” August Apologist’s EP What It’s Worth is demure and spiritually charged, both in the blatant messages of their lyrics and something about the softness of the instrumentation.

On “Stand and Sing,” the first of five tracks, a murmured vocal chorus pans over a repeating riff, and female vocals lend a crystalline, slightly pained croon, which glows against the loose, hush-hush vocal harmonies backing it on “Fearfully and Wonderfully.” Intermittent hand-claps pair with a twee pitter-patter that sounds like something I’d have banged out on my ol’ Playskool piano when I was four. But there’s nothing wrong with that. As soothing guitar brushes over a melody that’s barely there, the words of encouragement—“don’t give up”—are offered. Despite clapped-out rhythms and layers of vocals that melt and pool out a la Imogen Heap, the track sounds experimental and stripped down like a demo.

“Talk to Me” has a firmer melodic structure and features Cory’s vocals as well as King’s ultra-feminine ones. As they romanticize the notion of open lines of communication, sleepy guitars twirl around the lyrics.

On the topic of lyrics, it should be said that August Apologist’s will likely taste sour to the people who roll their eyes at “positive message” music, and there’s little variation from one song to the next. But there’s no denying it’s pretty.

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