Amanda X returns with propulsive new project 'Keepsake' - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart

An Amanda X release is always worth the wait.

Today the Philly indie rock power trio of guitarist Cat Park, bassist Kat Bean, and drummer Melissa Brain released Keepsake, their first new music since 2019’s Vivid End Of Days single. It’s full of heart and full of riffs, surveying the range of atmospheres the band has mastered: speedy punk on “Carousel,” simmering meditations on “Slight,” and pointed pop on the anthemic closer “Twin Flame,” which has an early Go-Gos thing going on in the best way.

Themes of change, course-correction, and figuring out your journey as you go play into “Crave,” where Park sings “I want to feel alive so I scream, or am I whispering? / I’m everything you ever wanted but I’m not sure I’m still the same” to upbeat and gnarly playing from her bandmates. On the burning “Eight Ball,” Bean’s lyrics circle around pleasure and pain, being drawn to darkness but remaining in the light; as they sing “I’m rid of you” at its finale, I’m not sure if the PJ Harvey nod was intentional, but damn if it doesn’t achieve a similar impact.

The band began writing the EP on tour in 2019, and recorded it over the ensuing three years with longtime collaborators Chris Baglivo and Evan Bernard. It’s out now via Self Aware Records, which also released Amanda X’s last LP Giant in 2017. Support the project here, take a listen below, and watch Amanda X’s Instagram for news of their in-the-works EP release show.

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