words: Jasmine Bourgeois
Released on the first day of the new year, Sisters is L.A. based quartet Ugly Sweaters’s most recent EP. Made up of partners Mandla and Claire Daley, Alex Pfender, and Ian Meltzer, the quartet’s been making a splash in the indie rock world since their first release in 2012. Last year’s EP, Dancing Shoes, garnered a lot of attention for its fun spirit and zest. The four have continued that legacy, making a five-track wonder full of contagiously bright, bubbly energy.
The opening title track is a poppy ode to awkward encounters. “I thought you were your sister/at the holiday barbecue...One time I kissed your sister/but I was thinking about you,” they holler. There’s a feeling of boyish naivety that rings throughout. In “Death By Flames,” they even celebrate less pleasant parts of being young, singing: “By the way/I think we’re out of soap/so I’ll warn you now/so we can plan how to cope.” This EP revels in all of the weird and embarrassing parts of being young. With tracks like “Back in School,” they explore the tensions of following routine and regimen with being young and beaming with an energy that’s too big for brick walls. On others like “Titus,” there’s a sense of eagerness to get out, be with friends, and make noise.
Ugly Sweaters play hard and play fast, making wavy beach rock tunes that make you want to move your feet and wiggle your fingers. Sisters is fueled with the kind of exuberance that feels true to the foundations of indie pop rock. More than anything, this EP feels like people who love what they do making the kind of grooves that light up a room.