Routine Faces Subvert Genre on Dynamic Debut Us vs. Them

As humans, we all have “routine faces” that are worn to convey differing and alternate versions of ourselves. Sometimes they subvert the authentic versions of ourselves in favor of a guarded or more pristine and presentable version for others. In the case of Chicago quartet Routine Faces, the combination of these “presentable” versions — in particular that of post-punk drummer and career opera singer — create the necessary conflict and chaos required to create and then embody an altogether new and dynamic persona.

On their forthcoming debut, Us vs. Them (which drops June 25), Routine Faces’ vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Sahara offers a character study largely drawn from her experience of growing up without means in the Midwest rust belt and working to make a distinct mark despite her back story. Her vocals navigate the colorful aural designs provided by her comrades as she dances a delicate tightrope between dance pop, synth-heavy rock, Americana and places in between. While the constants here are the memorable hooks, odd time signatures, and indie aptitude, the combination of their group attributes result in a sound that, as in the case of most great records, is sincere, albeit difficult to pigeonhole.

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