Grunge alternative band The Standby first started garnering attention last year with the release of their single “Wintersun,” which premiered via Dreambound, and the band’s debut EP Over, Under. Jordan Sigmund fronts the group as the guitarist and lead vocalist, with his counterpart Lyle Sallade on bass and backing vocals. The Erie, Pennsylvania natives received praise and placements with multiple outlets including Punk News and Substream. Their unique sound has earned them comparisons as the “modern-day Nirvana” with Alternative Press describing them as “falling somewhere between Kurt Cobain and emo fame.”
The Standby has now released an Over, Under anniversary compilation, consisting of demos and a previously unreleased track to commemorate the milestone of a successful debut. For fans of Nirvana, Microwave, Thrice, The Cure, Citizen, Balance and Composure, and more, this duo has created a grunge experience that effectively revives and revamps the subgenre in a glistening light.
The 3-track EP showcases the band’s emotive lyrics that tug fiercely at the heartstrings. These raw compositions exhibit dark, grungy tones that are strongly reminiscent of the ‘90s, with an intense modern twist. Psychedelic guitar work and deep bass lines effortlessly intertwined throughout the songs. “Wintersun” is a brooding track that relentlessly haunts with it’s dreamy, atmospheric soundscape. The pungent lyrics bring a vivid image to mind of those late, restless nights, wrestling with insomnia and lying in deep reflection:
“Sleepless mind, empty eyes. Lay next to you, all goddamn night. You’ve got a hold on the strings that tug my heart. Pull them hard, pull me apart.”
Check out The Standby’s neon dreamscape video for “Wintersun” here:
The immersive “Broca” opens with these piercing lines: “Please don’t shoot me with your gun. I’m just trying to break the silence. Please don’t shoot me with your gun. I’m just trying to understand.” This hypnotic track enamors with its chill vibes and contemplative spirit.
“Untitled” shows off the animated side of the band, with a dynamic, garage-rock track that grasps you in its clutches, implanting an ear-worm in your head and prompts you to cycle this song on a repetitive loop.
Moody, ethereal, & pensive. Each song delivers a full spectrum of emotions, placing blunt honesty and transparency on display. The Standby enthralls listeners with dark poetic lyricism, infused with a powerful, genre-defying blend of alternative, emo, and grunge. The only downside to the Demos EP is its short track listing, which leaves the audience disheartened and longing for more material from the Pennsylvanian duo.
“Wintersun” was my first exposure to The Standby and it immediately resonated with me with its otherworldly ambiance, insightful lyrics, and unique song structure. I highly recommend checking out the Demos EP as it provides a small, yet compelling, sample of The Standby’s artistry. After spinning these tracks, I advise you to dive into the rest of the band’s discography and follow them on social media, so you can keep up with the creative duo’s journey. These trailblazers have forged their own path in the music scene and have proven themselves as mighty forces to be reckoned with, as these emulating lights show no signs of dimming anytime soon.