“So satisfied I said a lot of things tonight
So long aphasia & the ways it kept me hiding
It’s not so much exactly all the words I used
iI’s more that i was somehow down to let them loose.

Pinvegrove, Caridnal

Pinegrove is the indie rock band of the year, it has already been determined by myself and so many other rabid listeners. Theirs is a fresh sound, that rare bird that finds its way into blogs and tastemaking machines. There’s emo roots for sure, but a little bit of hipster songwriter, too, and a hell of a lot of introspective heart.

Pinegrove is to 2016 as The Hotelier is to 2014 and Turnover is to 2015, this little-band-that-could that makes its breakthrough. I started listening to them earlier this year after seeing more than a few Twitter mentions, and now I can’t stop playing “Cardinal” every night. The record channels pensive loneliness in a subdued and understated way – they are not brash like Modern Baseball, they are not overly wrought like TWIABP, but they can be considered contemporaries in this post-emo revival, rock-for-the-heartfelt times.

While I love the layered guitar sound and their ability to build and bust into noisey little spells, I think it’s the melodies that make these songs worth returning to. On tracks like “Aphasia,” “Size of the Moon” and ubiquitous opener “Old Friends,” the verses seem to be written with as much of an ear for hooks as the choruses, and they find a way to take root in your brain. Something about this is very pop, and very now, but all else about them is rather garage band rock and roll. The combination is altogether hoest. Let this be the year of Pinegrove, let their subtle technique, elegant touch and gritty realism set the bar for what it means to forge a new sound built upon the foundations of rock and roll.

“I don’t know what
I’m afraid of
but I’m afraid
one day it all
will fall away 

Maybe I read that

But still, let’s see
 If nothing else it’s an idle curiosity.”

~Size of the Moon
Pinegrove, Cardinal