As the City Rumbles Underneath is a dream pop, two-piece band based in Toronto, Ontario, consisting of Cat Forsley and Ashton Price. Formed in late 2012, the band released their first EP Flowers from the Stars with record label Indie earlier this year, with a second planned for early 2015.
Alternative rock can only cover so many types of music before it needs to be broken down further. Dream pop is the music that echoes vocals and uses synths to create – desirably – music the listener can immerse themselves into.
Flowers from the Stars achieves this immersion, perhaps a little too well. Listening to the mellow beats and echoes of the first track ‘Hearts Expire’, attention does not immediately fall onto the lyrics of the song, but instead the guitar tricks and synths used to create the music, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it leaves the listener wanting more and gradually the lyrics break through with further listening.
The same mellowness continues throughout the EP until the remix of ‘I Am You Are’ – the fourth track on the EP – a daring addition, but one that works well. Most of the EP relies heavily on echoing the voices of both Cat and Ashton, something that is unnecessary given how strong their vocals are in ‘Said And Done (Naked)’, which removes the synths and echoes and uses just a piano and the band’s raw vocals, in other words, it is ‘Naked’.
Why listen to Flowers from the Stars? Another aspect of dream pop is that it creates a mood. This EP is not something you can dance to in a club, but rather it provides something to chill out to, whether relaxing at home or on a long drive cross-country. It is soothing without simply being background noise.