The opener, “I’m Static,” darts out with a quick throttle before giving way to full and charming chorus echoing The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. Only Colourmusic and Other Lives rival the group in terms of a quality single, but no one even touches its catchiness.
The tribal trill of the dangerous “Elevator” follows, but that flare of revolt settles into the sweet sincerity of the fair “Sunglasses,” which does its best “Jesus and Mary Chain on a Roy Orbison bender” impersonation to resoundingly positive results. The boy-meets-girl vocal line explodes mid-chorus into the most cheery set of screams you’ve heard before reverting into a sunny buzz of delicate, pattering drums and ringing guitar notes.
The subsequent “Records” tones it down with a steady dose of Joy Division-cool, and Crown Imperial keeps it ’80s with closer “You Belong to Me,” building off a chunky bassline into airier chords and a healthy portion of reverb.
It’s a sleek, stylish and polished effort that showcases a great deal of upside and maturity, ready to go places. Crown Imperial’s disc is not only one of the best from an Oklahoma act this year, but one of the best EPs of the year, period. —Joshua Boydston