Sincere Engineer - Rhombithian (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Sincere Engineer

Rhombithian (2017)

red scare

Sincere Engineer's Rhombithian was a record I couldn't wait to get my hands on. In a year where Waxahatchee and Worriers absolutely blew me away, and one where I had no new music from Hop Along or Laura Stevenson, I felt this was the ideal time to really sink my fangs in to the Chicago singer/songwriter. And Deanna Belos does impress, proving she's right up there with the acts I mentioned. Is Rhombithian as strong though? No. But it's still really great and definitely you can tell that for someone finding their footing on this album, big steps are looming ahead. With experience I can see Belos blowing up even bigger.

She's shaken off her folk punk tag here with Matt Jordan (You Blew It!, Signals Midwest) producing, bringing in the heat from her time opening up for Brendan Kelly of The Lawrence Arms. I can see why her cult following took to her. Her lyrics stand out the most -- endearing and super-sentimental. Not to mention eerily relatable. Songs like "Shattering" and "Ceramic Tile" shine, fitting the vein of Aussie indie-rockers, Camp Cope. 

To develop her sound, Belos enlisted a full band for these 11 tracks and the melodic/indie/power-pop vibe here feels fuller and more pronounced than I expected. The only thing is that it gets a bit repetitive after a while. However, the charm on songs like "Overbite" and the closer "Ghosts in the Graveyard" are stark examples of why you should be making notes. Rhombithian is emo, raw and real, and surely a stepping stone. Even when it loses you, it quickly reels you back in with the bad songs way better than the majority of what's out on the emo/indie market at present.