The Orange – Big Space Mission EP

The Orange
Big Space Mission EP

The Orange are one of those bands that obviously grew up on a hefty diet of good ol’ rock-n-roll and play it as if they were always meant to. Five songs of rock in its various forms make up this, the band’s second release (both EPs). They even included a live track on here, reinforcing the feeling from the remaining tracks that this is really a live band. Despite the amount of enthusiasm and energy they create, at least on their rockers, these songs beg for a live setting, maxed out amps, and stage leaps.

All the requisite components are here on this EP: all-out rocker, quiet and introspective ballad, sensitive folkster, and hook-laden popster. Even while emphasizing the instrumentation on the quieter tracks, these guys just seem to radiate energy and the desire to break out the driving guitars, shout-along choruses, and power beats. It’s catchy, fun, and while not entirely new, still done pretty damn well.

“Filibuster” starts with some edgy power-guitar riffs, a catchy chorus (about a filibuster? This might be a first), and some sheer rock-energy enthusiasm. The way the band effortlessly throws out riff after riff and double or triple vocals makes you remember rock-n-roll the way it was meant to be done. Things quiet down on the almost introspective “Young Amphibians,” with bits of soft piano and much more emphasis on melody, and then “The Nomad Way” goes a complete 180. This track can only be described as a country song, bouncy and playful, with crooning vocals and the kind of up-tempo, almost bluegrass beat that defines the genre. Oh, there’s some more rocking guitar in here too, as if the band flaunts the country style in some sort of inside joke, but this track doesn’t really fit their style, I think. “Guarding the Coast of Wyoming” surely does, though. Playful, poppy, fast and catchy, it’s a hodge podge of rock and pop/punk that reminds me of the best Too Much Joy songs, which is definitely a compliment. “I Declare” finishes up with an odd little acoustic guitar folk-style number. Tambourine, some twangy guitar, and multiple vocals make you think this is their playful, Barenaked Ladies-style piece. “Like a rumor or an influenza, something’s goin’ round,” they sing.

Powerful, energetic, and fun, that’s what I take from Big Space Mission. It’s not a groundbreaking album, but it packs a serious punch, and there’s just the right amount of hooks and riffs to keep me hitting repeat. A nice effort from these guys that leaves you itching for their full-length.