A couple of weeks ago I watched a documentary for the Revival Tour, a tour for indie neo-folk and country artists. It is lead by Chuck Ragan of Hot Water Music and every year he takes with him different artists to perform, usually they are also lead singers of punk rock bands. On this documentary I found about a guy I haven't heard before and his name is Jay Malinowski, the lead singer of Bedouin Soundclash. Impressed by his voice I immediately went on YouTube and checked some of his videos. That is how I stumbled upon Armistice.
The other half of this amazing project is Beatrice Martin also known as Coeur de pirate, an artist who we already reviewed here on Stereofox. She is young and really talented, but most of all she has such a beautiful voice. I have always had a thing for male female dual vocals and I was hooked from the first Armistice song I heard - "City Lights Cry". I played this song for days...it is that good!
Sadly enough Jay and Beatrice did only one EP together and they called it Armistice as well. The EP consists of five songs which is definitely not enough so you play them again and again. It is so hard for me to put this music into a genre...is it country or folk, is it indie pop? I guess you'll have to decide for yourselves!
Jay and Beatrice aren't the only ones behind the music of Armistice. Helping them are no other than several members from the punk rock band The Bronx, only this time the sound is not even close to punk or rock. They play in a mariachi style, which is most recognizable in the first song "Mission Bells", but goes through the whole EP. This music is pretty much out of my zone and at the same time the melody feels so familiar and close to me.
The Armistice EP is is pretty interesting when it comes to lyrics too. If you expect to hear love songs, you will and they are written beautifully:
"But you claimed that I was more than a man And seconds ‘til now you still loved who I am And darling I will run, I will chase you there In time you will learn there's us and them "
"‘Cause I’m I’m just no good So leave me, as you should And surrender to some unholy war ‘Cause we forgot what we first came here for
Oh then we could ring out like mission bells Across the yard we knew so well Come on come on give me my turn To sing once more And let it burn"
"Jeb Rand" is the song that surprised me the most. It is originally a Bedouin Soundclash song, but I like the Armistice rendition better, here the mariachi style is quite obvious as well. It is a song about the movie Pursued and tells the story of a man named Jeb Rand, whose family was killed when he was a little boy. Already an adult this is the only childhood memory he has. Now the people who murdered his family have found out he is still alive and are going after him, so he is running away trying to understand what caused all that.
"Jeb Rand Running from bullets of his past Jumping from rock to rock just out of grasp Orphaned boy coming in ships across the sea Memory is what you know not what you see Please understand
Jeb Rand you're a wanted man Shot down by your brother's hand Jeb Rand run out of this land ‘Cause they won't stop ‘til you can understand "
I'm not sure if Armistice are still together or if they plan on recording new stuff, but I hope we'll find out soon. Nevertheless the Armistice EP is flawless and deserves all your attention.