Infinity Girl - Harm (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Infinity Girl

Harm (2015)

Topshelf Records

Brooklyn's Infinity Girl are attached to many tags. Pop-punk. Emo. College rock. Shoegaze. And they do pay service to all these labels, but what their sophomore record, Harm, reinforces is that they pride themselves on the latter as well as in charting forward in the new wave of dream-pop bands out there. This record is a dizzying, trippy cyclone of melodic reverb and continues a unique narrative from a band I expect to blow up bigger pretty soon. They've got that mainstream appeal as opposed to the dark, hard-edged grit of say, Title Fight and Superheaven, whom I felt lost themselves in that too-subdued indie/DIY aspect of shoegaze. Both bands' last records were quite bland but when it comes to Infinity Girl, their take is more spritely and in doing so, they keep things exciting and unpredictable.

Take "Firehead" for example, which is one of a couple of tracks with a video-game-esque intro. Here, it's a bit of Zelda and as the album rolls along, the twinkly keys encased in swirling distortion, manage to hit home with quite a frenzy. This song leads as a foot-tapping, head-bobbing high. The 13 songs could take some getting used to but trust me, wait it out. A lot of tracks cohesively put their loud/soft dynamic to good use but it's the way in which the post-rock/moody/atmospheric ambiance is thrown in that gets me. It's no Kite Party but it's pretty damn good. "Locklaun" is another reference point for this as it feels like a mix of Caspian and Enemies. "Not Man" is another dream-pop gem for fans of Lilac Daze and Sweden's Maktherverskan.

If you find yourself bored amid all the wispy emo banter, "Heavy" and "Musei" crank things up a bit with guitars that are more jagged and feel rawer compared to the other shimmery gems that precede. There seems to be a few bands popping up trying to exploit this dreary shoegaze vibe and I'll be damned if I don't say that it's monotone as fuck (as I hinted earlier). Then there's an upbeat rebuttal like Harm which washes away that bad aftertaste. They inject life into the shoegaze/dream-pop canvas and whether it's abstract or direct, Infinity Girl speak creative volumes. There are flaws and room for improvement but it's an intuitive foot forward.