Sound: States is an indie pop band formed with Mindy White of Lydia and Bryan and Stephen Laurenson from Copeland, and they quickly put out the "Line 'Em Up" EP in late 2010. Their sound is really upbeat, with fun guitar chords, simple drumming, and very pleasing female vocals. Most of the music has a dance-able feel to it, and it also has an uplifting feel to it. The majority of the songs are quick and energetic, they do not take long to build up to a chorus. Even though the songs are pretty quick, they still have this laid-back, relaxing vibe to them. The kind of music that is good for driving, or hanging out with friends. The final song "Asleep" is the only song that is slower on the album, and it is very reminiscent of Lydia. The composition of the music is very simplistic, structured in a way that each band member gets little moments in the song to shine, and they focus on the vocals provided by Mindy White to be out in front and the main thing the listener hears. The guitars are pleasant to listen to, whether acoustic or electric, the drums are fun, and the bass sets up the framework for the songs nicely. Wrap this all up and throw in some glorious Mindy White singing, and you have a really good indie pop sound.
02. Falling For
03. Time to Begin
05. Another Chapter
06. Asleep // 8
Lyrics: The lyrics that go with States are pretty nice to listen to, they are heart-warming and motivational at times, and the way they are delivered is absolutely wonderful. Mindy White has a very lovely voice, and she is not afraid to use it on this EP. She can be soothing during one song, and uplifting and energetic in another. Some of the more depressing lyrics can be found in "Asleep":
"I can't stand to see your eyes when they're aiming at the floor,
But the worst is knowing I'm the reason for your bitter heart.
And with my head in my hands, I'm thinking of the things I've done so wrong
Though it's what I deserve, never take the melody from my song."
This is from the slower song on the album, that I felt was a lot like a Lydia song. The singing style is very sweet at this point in the song, kind of contrasting the nature of the lyrics themselves. Another set that usually comes to mind with this EP is the very catchy chorus of the opener, "Anxious":
"It's getting harder to ignore it
With the vital signs facing outward.
Joker, you've cornered yourself from it all
And now you are, you're looking awful anxious." // 9
Overall Impression: States are not messing around, quickly putting out a gem of an indie pop EP. The "Line 'Em Up" EP encompasses some fun musicianship with the wonderful vocals of Mindy White that Lydia fans have come to know and love. "Line 'Em Up" has set the path and tone for what people can expect out of these musicians in the future, especially with States releasing a full-length album this year. Anyone interested should first look into "Anxious" and "Another Chapter", which I felt were two of the strongest songs on the release. // 8