Levees is a San Antonio based band that, above all else, certainly strives to be unique. They describe themselves on their Facebook page as “desert voodoo blues rock,” which strikes me as a bit too flowery; a standard “indie rock” label, while much less glamorous sounding, is more than sufficient to describe the sound of Another Medicine.
I’ll admit, I was rather dismissive of this EP at first. The first track, “Little Lion,” while by no means terrible, begins without any real surprises. Bombastic guitar riffs, metaphorical lyrics, the usual trappings of alt-rock. Nothing disappointing, but nothing particularly noteworthy; that is, until halfway through the song, when it suddenly transforms from a usual alt-rock number to a dreamy, bass-led groove. This is the sound that Levee’s excels at; the mellow, intricate guitar work, a driving bass and more subdued vocals briefly turned the song from average to exceptional. This section lasted for but a moment, and soon I was thrown right back into the fast-paced ditty that I had escaped from.
This is a recurrence throughout the album. It seems that every song on Another Medicine is composed of two parts: the standard aggressive-fare, and a brief departure into fascinating, dreamy grooves. The exception to this little rule is the final track, the somewhat ironically titled “Uninspired,” which devotes itself almost entirely to the dreamy, spacey sound before successfully building into the fantastic, dynamic tone that Levees so often attempts to achieve.
This review may sound harsher than I intend; despite a relatively lackluster opening, they went on to exceed my expectations and finish strong. Kyle Anderson, a member of the band and a Trinity Alumnus, sent us this album to review, and I hope he sends us their next one too. I look forward to seeing where Levees takes their sound next.
Nick Smetzer is a First Year BAB major with a minor in Child Psychology.
When he’s not reviewing underground, underrated musical groups from the up-and-coming San Antonio scene, he’s working on transcending the physical dimension and becoming the first immortal.