Very Bad Vibes Releases a Deceptively Introspective Debut LP
Very Bad Vibes | via

Don’t be fooled by the ice cream cone in front of a hot pink backdrop gracing the cover of  Very Bad Vibes‘ debut LP, Toothpaste. Don’t be fooled, either, by the tremendously upbeat songs. If you listen, you can see that the Philly electronic pop artist creates a strikingly relatable narrative detailing his experience with many sobering topics that most people face at some point in their lives.

Sam Huntington, formerly of The Original Crooks and Nannies, is re-branding himself under the new persona, Very Bad Vibes. His  album, Toothpaste, showed up on Bandcamp on August 6. The ten-track LP is comparable to something that the modern rock band Miike Snow would release.

Very Bad Vibes released a music video on August 31 for the intro track on the album, “Sobering Up.” The video creates a very obvious metaphor for internal struggles through Huntington’s participation in a one-sided boxing match for the length of the video.

The track is carried by a constant stream of hi-hat beats that are a nice compliment to quirky lyrics lyrics like “Quit acting like you’re totally f—-d/ you know the lining is looking silver enough get tough,” sang in falsetto. The video features what appears to be intentionally low quality graphics and gives off the impression that it was recorded on a fifteen-year-old video camera is a fitting juxtaposition to the clean cut vocals and productions.

Content-wise, the track narrates struggles met by Huntington in the face of everyday monotony, and he livens up the potentially depressing subject matter with obviously ironic quips like “I’m out of milk so I’ll use a little yogurt, but I’ll buy beer and I’ll buy pot/I’m so great at being grown up.” The tracks make this apparent with names like “Grownups,”  “Flu Seasons,” and “Masking Tape.”

Huntington’s former band mate Madison Rafter has cameo vocals on the fourth and eighth tracks of the album. Huntington concludes Toothpaste with an uncharacteristically slow tempo-ed acoustic ballad called “Collect Call.” This song is about missing a friend or a lover, which seems to be left to individual interpretations. Ultimately, Very Bad Vibes gives listeners an album that is driven by the artful usage of auto-tune, distortion, production skills, and a wide vocal range.

Very Bad Vibes doesn’t have any shows scheduled as of now, but keep an eye on his gig dates here.

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