Reviewed by: Lauren Rosier
San Francisco-based The New Up has delivered a thoroughly solid record in Tiny Mirrors. The duo, comprised of Noah Reid and ES Pitcher, created an exceptional independent rock record that is politically charged while also being clearly introspective.
They blend the intense rock ‘n roll of Muse and the electronics of Phantogram on the opening track where they sing “…it’s a beat down world/do you think we should/let it all go/forget about things we that can’t change/oh we’ll forget about the things we could…”
Tiny Mirrors explores disconnection through the band’s lyrics, captivating arrangements, and musical attitude. The buzzing synths and riffs create an attractive package for alternative, and even potentially, mainstream radio, which seems to be embracing more electronic music.
The single “Black Swan” delves into layers of dreamy keyboards, heavy bass, and rocking guitar riffs paired with lyrics that illustrate the frustration of today’s political map in America and worldwide. Pitcher admits “…it takes time, but I live it out/living in a world/that I know is wrong/sometimes it makes me wanna shout/but I know I gotta stay strong…”
The track, “Green Candle,” highlights the band’s ability to write and arrange truly captivating and mysterious material. Pitcher’s voice is almost reminiscent of Garbage front woman, Shirley Manson, the way Pitcher’s able to convey a message through her attitude and how she evokes curiosity and engagement.
On another politically-driven track, “Paranoid”, Pitcher sings “…witnessed too many lies/I’m not about to be/another one/living a life that isn’t free/another one/living a life that isn’t free/another one/living a life that isn’t free/paranoid/these things are happening to me/months turning into years/never filling up with tears/my God it is/the apocalypse…”
The New Up has created an incredible record with tons to say in Tiny Mirrors. The production, arrangements and lyrics throughout the album create a package from start to finish that really spells out success for the duo from here on out.