The Deal: Local quartet Sugar Glyder independently releases its sophomore album, Poor Baby Zebra, over the summer, amidst consistent touring.
The Good: It's been a big year for the Charlotte band, which has played roughly 100 shows this year, including an opening spot for Silversun Pickups at their Fillmore gig in town. It was probably a good fit as Sugar Glyder has that same kind of indie rock style, without the comparisons to Smashing Pumpkins. Nice production work on the album to give the vocals some depth – background singing helps that, too – and the music gets some depth through varied instrumentation including keyboards. The music isn't necessarily complex, relying on the emotion of the vocals and lyrics to carry the listener through. There's a bit of English influence in here – Muse, Coldplay and the like – while still feeling grounded to the U.S. brand of indie.
The Bad: The 12 songs clock in at just more than 35 minutes. The 45 seconds of "B C D E" ... don't see the point of tracks like this that are simple instrumental interludes. There's a bit of a repetitive "sing the verses, scream the chorus" style here ... lyrical diversity helps though.
The Verdict: It's energetic, easy-to-listen-to indie pop and a band worth checking out when they're in town. (The band will perform at The Double Door Inn on New Year's Eve.)