Catch Fever Gives You All You Need On New EP
Catch Fever. Photo: Trish Badger
If you make music that’s worth hearing, then the way you present it to the world shouldn’t really matter. Based on the first time I saw Houston’s Catch Fever perform in early 2014, and later when I heard their debut release, Shiny Eyes, they were essentially just three guys trying like hell to make a dent in the Houston music scene. When they worked on their contribution to the first SugarHill compilation, NextWave, it became clear the band was moving in a different direction. When Catch Fever lost their drummer while the band was planning to release a new album and subsequently tour, something amazing happened. For most bands, the option to soldier on with a new drummer or disband completely would be the only two courses of action on their radar. However, for Catch Fever, there was a third option, which leads us to where we are today: finding the band performing as a two-piece. That album, aptly titled You Have All You Need, is an example of perseverance and determination coupled with catchy songwriting and hooks you can’t shake. Free Press Houston was lucky enough to get the chance to debut the EP in its entirety.
The five-song EP, which clocks in at just a little over the seventeen minute mark, showcases the depth that these two bring to the table when they kick things off with the head bopping nature of “Lost Love.” The muddy, fuzz-induced bassline that steers alongside synthetic beats and a deep drum tone is hard to forget. The catchy and memorable lyrics behind the chorus almost create an anthemic chant that emanates inside your head as the song snaps along at a speedy pace. The duo’s use of dual vocals and backing vocal tracks keeps the energy high while you head bop with each note. They follow this with the darker and slower speed of “I Should Have.” The distorted guitar alongside clicky beats don’t deter from the sole vocal track, pierced by a lone piano that just amplifies the song’s likeable sound. If this is these two going the route of the ballad, they definitely found a new way to construct it. There are moments where the track is closer to a slow jam than a pop song, and definitely different from anything the band had done in the past.
The third song keeps the mixture of electronics and live instruments going on “Eyes On The Stars.” There’s an almost swooning quality to how singer Taylor Huffman sings in such a heartfelt manner, before Josh Wilson adds a chanting backing vocal. However, it’s the fourth song, “Our Turn, Our Time,” that not only hearkens back to the band’s earlier sound, but also provides the standout sound of the five tracks. Though the band employs electronics on the song, they keep those drums and guitar perfectly timed, keeping them in the pop rock genre without sounding lifted or dated. The band closes things off with the piano heavy intimacy of “Some Things Never Change.” Though this soft, slower pace veers far from what these guys have done in the past, they actually shine on the track, adding strings to the keys paired with Huffman’s singular vocals. The songwriting here shows a growth that so many bands in today’s music world never seem to achieve. The song never picks up its pace, but it works and it’s the best way to end such a diversely crafted album.
Found exclusively here, the EP — which was co-produced by Justin Nava and engineered by Kevin Butler and mastered by Emily Lazar — really shows how far these guys have come since their debut. If you couple that with the fact that they had to completely reinvent how they perform, you’re left with an album full of determined ability and masterful craftsmanship. You can grab your own physical copy of You Have All You Need when Catch Fever performs at their album release party at Raven Tower on Saturday May 28th. The all ages show will also feature sets from Austin’s Mobley, The Beans, and Kay Weathers with doors at 7 pm and tickets between $10 and $13.