Album Review: TeamMate – TeamMate

No matter the career, in order for someone to grow in their position they need to accomplish two basic tasks. One, become extremely proficient at what they do – be it through formal education at a higher level to slaving away over pet projects act as a practice course for when the real opportunity comes. Secondly, and perhaps just as important is the marketability of said skillset once it is at a proficient level and the person or people are ready to embark on a new journey. In the entertainment realm, one of the multitude of ways of marketing ones-self is through guest features with other artists, either in the same genre or a different one. In 2015, indie pop duo TeamMate came on the radar of many when they teamed up with electronic producer Razihel for his single “Legends”, which undoubtedly opened a plethora of new opportunities and avenues. Fast forward to the here and now, and the duo is set to release their most prized creation yet – their debut, self-titled album – and boy, does it hit the right indie pop groove.

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Genre: Indie Pop
Label: Rostrum Records
Release: February 16, 2017
Connect: Facebook | Twitter
Purchase: iTunes | Google Play
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As an album, TeamMate is an intricately crafted and concise collection of songs, getting straight to the point of what to expect upon hitting play for the very first time. This is a record that albeit brief (clocking in just a smidge over 34 minutes over the course of 9 tracks), hits listeners full-fledged filling their eardrums with skittering synths, gorgeous melodies and incredible pop sensibility. One can correlate the sound to something reminiscent of Grouplove meets Great Good Fine OK with a higher utilization and sometimes reliance of catchy hooks and fully encompassing lush soundscapes. Even with a heavy reliance on the aforementioned elements, the sound is rather airy and free-flowing, keeping a groove that moves between tracks that creates cohesion without creating sameness.

TeamMate – Damage (Official Audio)

Our debut album is out now! http://smarturl.it/teammate Watch our new video for Damage: https://youtu.be/dOyla10Rlow Follow TeamMate online: http://teammateband.com http://facebook.com/teammateband http://twitter.com/teammateband http://instagram.com/teammateband http://soundcloud.com/teammateband http://www.youtube.com/user/TeamMateBand (c) Rostrum Records 2017

For example, the opening track, “Nothing’s Ever Over” relies on budding electronics and tight percussion to set the mood while the following track, “What You Got” utilizes simple piano chords to drive the music with layered electronics. These subtle differences showcase how tightly created the sound is as each track has a distinct feature that pushes the sound forward while still giving room to the overarching elements — retro to airy electronics, toe-tapping and rhythmic drumming and catchy, memorable hooks — to truly breathe. The flipside to this is that listeners will notice when the sound changes, which is what happens on the latter half of the album as TeamMate opt out of the summery soundscapes, explosive choruses and dance-y vibes in favor of more toned-down, even-keeled ones giving the record a feeling of two halves.

TeamMate is a record that much like a vast majority of music, contains songs that will linger on in your head for days and others that seem to fall flat – that is essentially the spot almost all musicians find themselves in. While there seems to be a relative split of hits and misses found here, the ones that do strike that right chord are extraordinarily catchy and leave a lasting impact. In the end, even with a slight tale of two halves and a vocal delivery style that rarely differs throughout, TeamMate have crafted a strong debut album and solid entry into the indie pop scene and here’s to hoping the follow up doesn’t take nearly as long.

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