You can’t spell Remo without emo
Remo Drive’s debut album Greatest Hits has sent the local Minneapolis emo/alt rock band into a meteoric rise of popularity. Boasting over 200,000 views on their unique video for their single “Yer Killin’ Me,” and a shout out from prolific YouTube music reviewer The Needle Drop, Anthony Fantano. Remo has been seeing considerable coverage. This isn’t just luck, Greatest Hits is a hook laden, infectious, tongue-in-cheek alt rock emo record.
Greatest Hits doesn’t reinvent any genre but does outshine the hordes and hordes of other “garage-rock, indie-rock bands” that are rampant on Bandcamp. Remo pours passion and emotion into each song and it is clear when vocals weave in and out from gang choruses, to falsetto (fendi fendi gucciiii), to yelling (3:30 Tryin 2 Fool u). What makes the lines stuck in your head for hours is infectious and off kilter delivery that is reminiscent of Tell All Your Friends era Taking Back Sunday, where the vocal pattern is unpredictable, making what could be a normally sung line, into something that stands out. Greatest Hits is brimming with small catchy intricacies. Whether it be a guitar lead that gets vocals added over it in the same pattern, or tempo changes multiple times in a song, it’s an album that still maintains fresh even after repeated listens.
Having seen them multiple times in the past, in small cramped basements to smaller venues, Remo has always had a knack for songwriting and catchiness. Live, Remo comes even more alive and the heavy parts get heavier, the catchy parts get catchier, and the gang vocals get screamed even louder. Greatest Hits sounds like Remo is playing in your living room, capturing the essence of Remo Drive superbly.
This album is FULL of potential huge hits that could very easily be played on your local college radio station or pretty much any station that would also play a Weezer song. Highlights like “Crash Test Rating” and “Art School” both of which have music videos, and are perfect concoctions of catchy choruses (the former boasting my favorite line on the album “you only like me cause I’m safe, with my four star crash test raAating”) and heavy jam parts.
If Greatest Hits shows anything is that Remo Drive has tons of potential, on top of an already stellar debut record. If their influences become less apparent and they carve out a niche for themselves in the sea of emo copy-cat bands (which I think they will), Remo Drive will be huge.
by Andy Wilcox