When I was a kid, it seemed like Harrison Ford could do no wrong. He made The Empire Strikes Back in 1980, Raiders of the Lost Ark in 1981, Blade Runner in 1982, Return of the Jedi in 1983 and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom in 1984. Now, imagine if these blockbusters had been little-seen independent films. They'd still be great films, but to enjoy artworks and cultural experiences to the fullest, we need to share them with others. That brings me to VHS Collection: This New York City band is producing one would-be hit after another, yet remains largely unknown.
"Waiting on the Summer" is the first VHS Collection song that I heard (thanks, Natalie!). It's easy to imagine it playing on millions of car radios during Memorial Day weekend. Yet, with a relatively modest 144,000 views on YouTube, this is the band's most popular track. Take a listen. If you like it, I think you'll like almost everything else that VHS Collection has released:
Tracks on SoundCloud
- So I Met Someone
- Wide Awake
- The Longest Drive
- The Black
- Waiting on the Summer
- Late Night (It's Okay)
- Far Hills Cider
"Fire" has awesome vocals that are like a mash-up of Duran Duran and Peter Gabriel atop a synthesized mid-bass that reminds me of the score from Netflix's Stranger Things. "Late Night (It's Okay)" is like going back in time to hear U2 as they were getting their start. "Stranger" is sung in a kind of exasperated staccato (a breathless voice where most words end sharply the way a "k" sound does) that reminds me of how Ray Davies sang for The Kinks. In other tracks, I hear hints of Badfinger and The Guess Who, but nothing feels like a rehash.
Let me say something else about these songs: They're recorded beautifully. Actually, everything about this band seems polished, from their logo to the typography in their lyric videos to the photographs on their website. VHS Collection is a band that is waiting for a break. Maybe together we can make it happen.