Review: Stay At Home Dad – EP 1

This summer, Rock On Philly announced that Stay at Home Dad would be their artist of the month for August. Considering the high caliber of musicians in the greater Philadelphia area, SAHD’s victory is quite the accomplishment. In June of this year, Stay At Home Dad released their first studio album, “EP 1”. The no nonsense title reflects the Punk influence from which the band evolved. Although there are only three tracks on the EP, each delivers in its own right, and define the post pop-punk sound of Stay At Home Dad.

The album opens with “Going Postal”, and listeners will instantly be struck by the catchy, dream-pop inspired guitar riffs that invoke the influence of Philly legends, The War on Drugs and Kurt Vile. Rhythm guitar player Benjamin Gress, wrote the song and it is emotionally delivered by the band’s primary vocalist, Susy Sanchez. Lyrically, “Going Postal” plays with the mail-themed title by delivering lines like, “I’ll send you a postcard from mom’s house or wherever I am.” When the chorus hits, Marcos Sanchez doubles his sister’s vocals and the listener is able to hear the full power of Stay at Home Dad. Even with only one listen, the songs catchy chorus can easily become trapped in the listener’s mind.

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Hook Line Sink Em” was written by Susy Sanchez, and the song shows the band’s willingness to let its music breathe. SAHD is a five-piece, but at no point does this track sound crowded, which is quite the accomplishment. Susy’s vocals are the central focus of this tune, but the rest of the band does an excellent job of creating a driving beat that works in tandem with Susy’s vocals.

“EP 1” concludes with the genre-bending track, “War On Drugs”. The song opens with a guitar riff that may remind listeners of the prominent Philadelphia based band, Hop Along. Just when the listener thinks they’ve figured out the song structure, it takes a really interesting turn with a bridge that is one part “Spoon,” one part “The Mars Volta,” and one part “System of a Down”. The metal influence in the last track is a fantastic addition, and once again shows that the band knows when to hold back. Most of the band members cite metal as a musical inspiration, but by only bringing it in during the last track, they once again display their mastery of the “less is more” concept in music.

Stay At Home Dad’s first album serves a preview of what’s to come for the band, and one can only imagine what they’ll create for their next album.

Check out this performance by Stay At Home Dad featuring Jimi Clark of The Flattened Soles on bass. The video was filmed by Amanda Silberling. The featured image for this post was taken by Scott Dickinson.

@DougEKeller

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