by Tyler Hayes
Back in In 2009 Freelance Whales released Weathervanes, which was then re-released in 2010 by Mom & Pop Records. The band gained a ground swell of attention from that overly rhythmic and incredibly hooky album, slowly getting the name recognition that was well deserved. For those who haven’t managed to grab time with the band, they’re a burst of youth with synth thrown in all the right places. And even years later, their debut album is worth your time.
Of Monsters and Men on the other hand may have seemed to come out of nowhere. The icelandic band has a very similar rhythmic and poppy sound like that of Freelance Whales, though slightly earthier. Of Monsters and Men took over the digital charts with their debut ‘My Head Is An Animal’, still appearing on the top 10 almost 2 months after it released.
I have no inside knowledge on Freelance Whales’ sophomore effort other than what Paste has reported on it, stating that the band hopes to have it out sometime in summer 2012. But even without hearing a single song from the yet to be released album, I could tell you that it was poised to be a big deal with the indie scene and, by all accounts, should bubble up in organic growth to be a be deal in the mainstream. The question though, did Of Monsters And Men steal Freelance Whales’ thunder? Two very similar bands playing to the same crowd, are people over it by the time the album is released or did ‘My Head Is An Animal’ just wet people’s appetite?
Though I might have been a little worried when I saw ‘My Head Is An Animal’ top charts and gain praise from nearly everyone, including Amazon Digital Store heralding it as their favorite release this year, I think this only helps Freelance Whales. In the same way that Kings Of Leon set off a slew of Alt-Country/Rock bands, I don’t think the public has even realized what hit them when it comes to this poppy, teeth grinding rhythmic sound. Check out the two videos below of each band performing an acoustic version of their respective hits and tell me they’re not in the same music space and a little more similar than you might of thought. Who’s your favorite of the two bands?