The Forms’ 2011 EP Derealization is so flashy you might need shades?

New York-based duo, The Forms, made a bold move on their 2011 EP Derealization. Band members Alex Tween and Matt Walsh are an ambitious pair that meld indie rock, math rock and dream pop style music. For this project, they intertwined a lot of big name artists in a very short amount of time. Within less than twenty minutes of music, Derealization highlights members from five other bands: The National’s Matt Berninger, Andrew Thiboldeaux of Pattern is Movement, Craig Wedren of Shudder to Think, Dirty Projectors’ Nat Baldwin and St. Vincent’s Daniel Hart.
Unfortunately, the half of the EP—or the three tracks—that feature other artists singing are also the most memorable songs. The other half, though still very good, feels less impressionable. This does leave the lingering question of, “Are The Forms super awesome or do they have great taste in music?”
On the opening song, Fire to the Ground, Berninger’s voice is immediately recognizable which poses a harsh contrast to the second track, Same Path Mantra, which is entirely by The Forms. These contrasts, which are surprising and interesting, continue throughout the entire EP as every other song has a guest singer.
The duo released Icarus, their debut album, in 2003 and followed in 2007 with a self titled EP. Tween and Walsh toyed with creating a “remix album” in the making of Derealization. Though the songs are not direct remixes, the duo deconstructed their first two projects to create six tracks that are intended to capture The Forms’ essence perfectly.
The Forms clearly have a lot of talent, potential and wonderful networking skills, all of which will do great things for them. Hopefully future albums will allow their talent and hard work to shine through more clearly than that of their flashy, famous friends. All in all, Derealization is a very unusual and catchy EP. But listeners may forget that they are, in fact, listening to The Forms.

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