For a band fronted by a 19 year old, Annuals shows an incredibly maturity and focus. Citing typical indie rock influences like the Arcade Fire, Animal Collective and Sufjan Stevens, Annuals is actually able to combine them without sounding derivative. I would say they combine the atmospherics of Animal Collective, with what's that? I think I definitely hear a little emo influence. While I know they're name-dropping these bands as fodder for the indie crowd, they have a little emo peeking through. Though, I degrade emo kids till the sun goes down, I still have a soft spot for emo. Come on guys, don't be ashamed, embrace it! (I have). For these are the moments that make them surpass their influences: the moments of honesty and power that emerge on "Brother" that make you wanna break out your air guitar and strum along. Definitely an album I'm looking forward to hearing more of when it's released this fall.
Bonus Track - Bleary-Eyed