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Neutral Shirt | photo by Josh Redman | via the artist’s bandcamp page

Philadelphia’s Neutral Shirt is the solo rock project of Matt Terrones, but like a lot of solo projects these days, it has all the trappings of a full-fledged rock band. Their debut EP “2016” drops (ironically) on the first Friday of 2017, January 6th, via Lost Sound Tapes, but you can stream three of its tracks now below, via their Bandcamp page. If 2016 left you feeling drained and lonely, then this is the record for you.

Speaking of loneliness, first track “Alone Today” kicks off the record with a pleasant male-femaile harmony and wonky, chorused leads. Then, third track “Dust On Your Shelf,” employs dissonant chords and a sleepy groove to emphasize the bummer image of being “dust on your shelf.” Fifth track “Sometimes I Just Want to Give Up” is (again, ironically) the most upbeat of the set. Its bright, harmonized guitar interludes pair nicely with its plucky lyrics and soaring melodies, and for a song about throwing in the towel, it sounds pretty optimistic. If the other three tracks on the EP are as solid as these, maybe next year won’t be so bad after all. See you in 2017, “2016”!

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