The ebullient melodies that informed the music of Ian Gassman's old band Night Owl can be heard throughout Confluence's new EP. But instead of reflecting that group's more upbeat Elvis Costello vibe, these songs have an expansiveness of spirit reminiscent of recent pop bands such as Surfer Blood and the late Desolation Wilderness. The juxtaposition of circular guitar figures and hanging chords, angular leads and Gassman's plaintive singing on "Complication" suggest an unlikely meeting of soul and math rock, while the syncopated rhythms and dynamics of "Lexa Harper" give it a feeling of both hesitation and contemplation, as though the band were coming to terms with an unresolved tension with the song's subject."Founded Way" ends the EP on a hopeful, just-shy-of-triumphant note, with layers of complementary rhythms and a playful call-and-response guitar line.


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