Our Favorite Nashville Boys Sparking Attention: Vinyl Thief’s Stop Motion EP

By Charissa Lock

Never failing to deliver inspirational intros, magnificent bridges, and Grayson Proctor’s unforgettable vocal possibilities, Vinyl Thief’s follow-up to the 2012 Rebel Hill EP is electrifying.  With natural instincts of professional musicians, these boys fester in confidence, letting it boil and flow into mature and catchy melodies.  Hosting four tracks, as opposed to the three on their former album, you gather a greater sense of who these fellows are and what they’re all about.  Bringing along “Faces,” they seem to wrap their essence around these songs, blossoming into a steady image.

Remembering the previous comparison to Cold War Kids, the thread within Stop Motion seems to carry The Killers’ sound in a pop rock atmosphere.  It could be the high-toned spaced out synth melody rolling you in on “Smooth,” or Proctor’s intonations when hitting certain notes.  Implementing the 80s synthy anthem amongst modern instrumentation and style seems to be the overall factor in comparison.

Stop Motion begins with a silky “Smooth” start (…so there’s a pun) where the guitar melody swoops you along into a typical Vinyl Thief track full of fluid transitions and brilliant bridges.  “Faces,” taken from their past EP, fits elegantly within the confines of its new home.  Sadly, it lost some heart and soul as it seems masked, opposed to the let loose, scream-it-all previous version.   However, the multiple instrumentation, sliding by and sitting upon one another, is just the right amount of texture.  How could you not want to be throwing your head back belting out the bridge grasping an imaginary microphone?  Putting brakes on the upbeat nature comes, ironically titled, “Slow Down.”   I wasn’t quite sure how I would feel about a Vinyl Thief ballad of sorts.  The result is beautiful.  Ending up being my favorite track on the album (which never happens), this piano driven delicacy has a prominent building factor paralleling with vocals.  At 2:32 you feel like you’re in The Naked and Famous or another magnetic bridge that I can’t pinpoint at this time, but will probably appear in my dreams a week from now.

Check out the key-work on the opening to their final track, “Stop Motion,” (reminding me of my favorite The Joy Formidable track “The Leopard and the Lung”).  Very fancy and rallies you right along with excellent foot-stomping to the bass drum as you travel a little further in.  The exhilaration of letting go and feeling the breeze weave in and out of your hair with your soul shouting “frame by frame,” along with Proctor.  Nothing beats the dramatic inclusion, breakdown, and build up of the bridge.  So spectacular with this over a minute creation, literally stopping you in your tracks as you soak in the whole process.

These lads are talented, catch them early while you can still get up front and touch someone’s chucks or to meet them after the show to share your love and devotion.  As of now they’re playing the mid-Atlantic area before catapulting into SXSW in Austin.  I’ll miss them this time around, but will be sure to see them the second they venture towards New England.

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