Music News


Someone is bound to compare Balkans to the Strokes because of the spiky, jangly guitar sound and the vocals, which are just shy of crooning. But these guys won't care. Why should they? Not yet 21, they're still discovering what their group is about, even as they've established a musical identity for themselves, going on tour far from their Atlanta home and taking risks with their music before most people have heard of them. If you took Television, sped it up some and removed some of the sense of menace at the edges, you'd end up with something approximating Balkans. On each track of the band's recently released, self-titled full-length debut, you'll find hints of where it's headed, well beyond any obvious influences. Live, Balkans is an interesting mixture of confidence, youthful exuberance, innocence and introspection.

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Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.