ALBUM REVIEW: The Spill Canvas – Conduit

Release Date: March 5th 2021
Label: Pure Noise Records


South Dakota four-piece The Spill Canvas are celebrating their 20th anniversary, and since they sadly can’t celebrate the occasion by touring for the time being, they’ve put out their seventh studio album, ‘Conduit’, their first in almost nine years.

Interestingly, ‘Conduit’ was the title originally listed on Amazon and Best Buy’s website for their 2007 release, ‘No Really, I’m Fine’, when it first became available for pre-order. Fourteen years later, the title has made its way onto an official release.

The waltz-y feel of opener ‘Architecture’ instantly brings a Don Broco meets Snarky Puppy vibe to the table. The jazzy and funky feel of the verse is both contrasted and complimented by the chorus, which is clearly gig-ready.

‘Darkside’ gets the heavy ball rolling, wasting no time in delivering a hard-hitting floor-filler. Nick Thomas‘ voice goes between sounding like Brendan B. Brown (Wheatus), to Brandon Flowers (The Killers), to M. Shadows (Avenged Sevenfold) in a matter of syllables, and it’s really something to behold. ‘Akathisia’, possibly the best song on the album, also delivers the emo flavour, sounding like an indie band that discovered a distortion pedal.

Among the heavier rock songs, the album has some moments more reminiscent of modern pop. For example, the opening of ‘Calendars’ would not sound out of place in a night club, with the funk driven verses and feel good chorus cementing that feel, while ‘Molecules’, a duet with Eisley singer Sherri DuPree Bemis, is a mostly acoustic ballad that also wouldn’t sound out of place in the slow dance section of a high school prom. It’s easy to see people dancing to both of these songs, and surprisingly these elements don’t feel out of place with the rest of the record.

While the styles don’t often marry well, ‘Conduit’ almost perfectly marries together a jazzy feel, a funk feel, a heavy rock feel, and a pop feel seamlessly.