Who: Unlikely Friends (UF) is made up of veteran artists from the Northwest which includes D. Crane (of Seattle’s BOAT), Charles Bert (of Seattle quiet indie-pop band Math & Physics Club, Chris MacFarlane (owner of local indie-pop record store/label Jigsaw Records) on drums plus a rotating cast of talent that currently includes Mark McKenzie (BOAT), Jackson Long (BOAT), and Ethan Jones (Math and Physics Club).
Sound: Power pop at its finest that brings the likable sounds of those familiar with The Posies, Velvet Crush, The Young Fresh Fellows and Brendan Benson.
TFN Final Take: Unlikely Friends sophomore record, Crooked Numbers, is one of those albums that catches you by surprise. My expectations for a new album always start off somewhere in the middle and most of time, because of TFN submission volume, they are lucky to survive the quick scan. UF immediately connected and held my attention for its full 30-minute running time.
Song after song, UF lands big sing along moments that stick in your head like on the warm “Hey Sunshine” that captures the moment you see the light in a troubled relationship as you sing along with “and the sunshine crawls across my window, its been a long time I felt anything at all.” A track you can relate to along with others such as the just over a minute “39 Steps” that has one of the best lines “39 steps to get to your door – I think you’re a real nice girl but I just can’t keep walking these steps anymore.”
Unlikely Friends’ Crooked Numbers is full of fun from the layered harmonies and carefree rock from beginning to end. The band accomplishes this with a mix of lo-fi rock and big pop jams that can be summed up in either 39 seconds like “Kool-Aid-Smell” or the almost 3 minute catchy closer, “The Strangest Kind.” At the end of the day, you didn’t know you needed Unlikely Friends but you are totally glad you found them!
Unlikely Friends Website
Unlikely Friends Facebook
– Reviewed by Christopher Anthony