Seconds into “Sirens,” one can tell that Radiohead and Muse register high on the band’s radar, yet more bound by convention than either.
If that reads as a dig, it’s not necessarily meant to be; as much as Admirals obviously lust after that huge, space-rock sound, it also strives to be catchy and accessible. It’s simply more Chris Martin than Thom Yorke.
Lesser groups would fall flat on their faces aspiring to such heights, but Admirals’ more-than-capable core — highlighted by singer/guitarist Colton Tucker’s exceptional alt-rock pipes — easily cruises to lofty altitudes. “Heartstrings” will inspire air drumming and passionate sing-alongs in three listens or less and wouldn’t sound out of place on modern-rock radio.
The other songs touch bases across a wide spectrum, with moments akin to fellow Stillwater act Deerpeople, right at home on Interpol’s Antics, or straying into The Fray territory.
Admirals don’t necessarily find themselves over the course of the six-song affair, which mostly reads as a patchwork of influences, for better or worse. As impressive as this debut is, the polish might have erased some of the group’s character in the process. Some quirks, cracks and imperfections might actually work in its favor.
Still, Admirals’ proper introduction to the world is hugely promising, and they seem more than apt to find themselves in the company of those bands they so openly adore. —Joshua Boydston