Ex Friends - No Wonder We Prefer the Dark [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Ex Friends

No Wonder We Prefer the Dark [7-inch] (2012)

Paper + Plastick

Plow United's reunion continues to bear tasty treats. PU bassist Joel Tannenbaum hooked up with future bandmates Audrey Crash, JP Flexner and Jaime Guokas around the time of Plow United's reunion at Riot Fest East 2011. A year later, they're dropping a sweet new 7" on Paper + Plastick. No Wonder We Prefer the Dark delivers four catchy punk tunes (five if you go digital) that mark a gruff departure from Plow United's signature sound.

Oh, the songs are still infectious like the plague, but Tannenbaum has a far raspier delivery than Brain McGee. But coupled with Crash's high register, Ex Friends sound closer in spirit to the kind of bands Rumbletowne is championing on the other side of the country. RVIVR and Agatha certainly come to mind. Ex Friends have a loose, energetic delivery.

They also totally have an origin song. "Ex Friends" breaks down the many ways people grow to hate each other–with a big throaty chorus along the way. "So Many Kisses" goes a similar route. That leaves "The Legend of the Holy Drinker" and "Archaeologists of the Future," the opening and closing tracks, respectively, as the relatively heavier tunes. Not quite as poppy, but they possess some nice guitar textures, especially on "Archaeologists."

Bonus track "Waimanalo Confidential" is in keeping with the 7" proper, although the outro stretches on a little too long. Of the five songs, it's ever so slightly less essential, making it a prime outtake. But overall, No Wonder is a strong 7" from a bunch of Philly folk with history. With Plow United's members spread across the country, it's also hopefully a teaser for a full-length.