In Between, the debut album from Fort Collins trio Glass Cases, strives to relate to the band’s own demographic: a generation disillusioned with adulthood. In their own individual ways, these 20-somethings found that coming of age isn’t a straight path to happiness. It can be rather dark when you can’t find a job to sustain a modest life – or worse, when a friend commits suicide. Released today, stream or purchase the album here.
Combining elements of synth-pop and alternative rock, Glass Cases create a vibe that’s both interesting and marketable, like Twenty One Pilots, Imagine Dragons, and even The Pet Shop Boys. Songs like ‘Caught’ showcase alt-rock drumming by Cameron Greene and the synth of keyboardist, vocalist, ukulele player Austin Seifert, who’s rapid, spoken-word lyric delivery rears it’s head halfway through the record. Co-lead-vocalist and bassist Alex Van Keulen’s vocal presence shines like Keane in “Sunlight” and more, as the band mix and match dark moods with some danceable beats.
Many of the songs include sudden musical shifts, flipping from Jukebox The Ghost influence to that of Muse and even 311. It’s appropriate for the disjointed feelings the bandmates may have in their personal lives, but the technique exhausts itself halfway through the album. It’s used effectively in songs like “Man’s Compromise” and “Welcome Mat,” which are reminiscent of epic musical theater or symphonic metal. However, these shifts are a bit spoiled early on in the album, creating a sense of incoherent songwriting, which interferes with the band’s solid musicianship and well polished production.
Glass Cases’ topically relevant lyrics about social media and insecurity hit close to home for any millennial or gen Z-er, paired with a clear, sonic direction that acts as an excellent conduit. But song forms don’t have to shift as much as living situations can for young artists looking for a little stability. With In Between, Glass Cases have just begun that journey. It’ll be exciting to see who they’ll become.
Glass Cases release In Between online March 21. The originally planned release celebration at Red Rocks Amphitheater’s “Local Set” was to be the band’s debut at the famed venue, but has been cancelled due to coronavirus precautions.