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COLUMN: New to Bloomington: Six Foot Blonde releases their first EP

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Easily one of the most notable musical projects to emerge from Bloomington in the last few years, Six Foot Blonde has managed to attract a steady following thanks to their addictive melodies. The band was formed in Bloomington, and their sound comes from a blend of indie soul and retro pop music.

In April 2023, the band released their first EP, "Tino's Place," a six-track record containing new songs and previously released singles. I wasn't sure what to expect from such a short record, but it exceeded my expectations.

"Tino's Place" explores multiple different themes, and no two songs sound the same. After listening to the entire record in one sitting, the first and probably most important observation I made was that it was acoustically very well produced. Each track's sound is rhythmically in tune with what the song's energy is, and I was impressed to say the least.

The first track, "Callin’ to Karma," is a single released in 2022 and the first the band ever put out. Starting out the EP with this commercially successful single was a no-brainer  the track explodes with infectious energy and its light-hearted exuberance creates a very upbeat atmosphere. This track also showcases the dynamic vocal performances the band has to offer, and I feel that it served its purpose as an introduction to the record perfectly.

The second track, "Red Wine, White Wine," is nothing short of phenomenal. This is my personal favorite from the record  nothing else comes close to it. This track is much slower than "Callin' to Karma," but its four-beat pianistic foundation is sure to keep listeners hooked. Oddly, it sounds like something I would expect from a band like Mother Mother, which is probably why I’m so impressed with this track.

"Nora," the third track, is slow for the first four minutes. Coming in at almost six minutes in length, "Nora" is the longest song on the record. Compared to everything else on the EP, this track is more melancholic, or so I thought. The last two minutes are a frenzy of energetic bursts, almost as if the first half of the song were an extravagant buildup to it, albeit a slow buildup. The only criticism I had here is the track did seem repetitive at some points, but the lyricism and acoustics easily made up for that.

"Tino’s Place," the namesake track, is a purely instrumental tune  one minute and 25 seconds of saxophone. This short track length is a notable contrast to observe. Calling it soothing is an apt description. I would personally mark this as the halfway point on the album, as the band's sound shifts slightly in the two tracks that follow this.

Penultimately, we have "Lady," another previously released single from 2023 and the fifth track on the EP. This track picks up the saxophone-centered groove that "Tino's Place” highlighted, and slows down around the halfway mark, in contrast to "Nora." This slower point has a catchy riff that I must applaud, and it leads into what I believe to be the best-sounding chorus on this record.

Finally, "15 Months" is the sixth track overall and arguably the most versatile one. "15 Months" starts off with a comforting acoustic guitar chord progression, reminiscent of "Nora." This final track is a strong conclusion to this EP, and the lyrics paint a melancholic and solemn picture. From lines about "Blueberry fields" and "lemon trees," to "The drawings on your walls...through the thin walls of this home," listening to "15 Months" was truly a serene experience.

Overall, this EP was a great investment of my time. Having only formally produced music for two years now, Six Foot Blonde shows how impressive it is for a diverse range of sounds to be stretched across just six songs. The band’s performance on a full-length album could undoubtedly push them to even greater heights.

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