Review: Seatbelt’s Smallsounds

Stripped down acoustic music has a certain beauty to it. The lyrics have more of a presence while in turn giving the sound a significant meaning. The harmonies cast a sheen like a ganache on a scrumptious cake. The Pawtucket boyfriend/girlfriend duo of Cody Mcilmail (who you might know from his garage rock project Harvey Garbage) and Amelia Rose are spot on with all these characteristics via their act Seatbelt. Their vocals resonate a doo-wop soul quality that’s absolutely infectious and their debut EP Smallsounds supports the claim.

Recorded by Matt Jones at The Grove embedded within the heart of Providence’s west end, there’s a raw tone is abundant in each song. There aren’t any special effects or anything fancy. Just press play and hear Mcilmail and Rose croon and swoon on a consistent basis. It can be difficult to find music these days that’s both real and genuine. Seatbelt is an exception with a heartfelt fashion that plucks the heartstrings.

Waltzing its way into the ears is “Ghosts Gone Wrong” while Rose sings with a jazzy vibrato. The harmonies are exemplified in “Spook Me Out” with Mcilmail and Rose combining their vocals to create hypnotic vibes. “Now We Are Sinners” has a low key sexiness about it and all you have to do is listen to the lyrics to get a inkling of what the track is all about. Rose brings out the tambourine for “Undertow” with Mcilmail’s singing takes the lead. “Hate Yourself” is a bit different than the rest by having a sonically distorted beginning.

Seatbelt have a series of Providence shows coming up at Dusk on August 31, The Parlour on September 2 and Aurora on September 25. Make sure to catch at least one of these instances of this duo performing live. Mcilmail and Rose will definitely leave a lasting impression.