The Flips, A Harm Deep But Shining


The Flips are a rock quintet from Chicago. Formed five years ago, this band — headed by Nick Sintos — has undergone many lineup changes on its way to achieving a distinctive sound, described as “an entrancing mix of simmering calm and blistering, abrasive frustration.”

The Flips released an EP in 2011, and this year sees the release of the full-length album A Harm Deep But Shining.

“Intro” is an introspective piece with slow, resonant guitar notes and vocals to match. These vocals are pleasingly unconventional. A bit high-pitched, but very strong and impassioned.

The track “I’m Okay” has quite a share of emotional turmoil for a song bearing such a title. The vocals shift from slow to howling, then back to slow.

Is the track “God I’m Sorry” addressed to the man upstairs? Either way, this offering has a very strong alt rock sound taking my ears back some 18-20 years to the genre’s glory days.

A nice, subtle lil’ riff launches the track “Racing Stripe.” At 1:32 we have this glorious vocal outburst. Sintos sounds a bit like Cobain when he sings the word “heart.” About one minute later, there’s this wildly intense interlude.

Speaking of wildly intense, have a listen to 1:37 on the formidably titled “Jawbreaker.” Gloriously sung are the lyrics: “There’s rotting in my mind / And in my soul.” When it comes to angst, Sintos has a stadium-caliber voice. He throws apocalyptic tantrums, and stays in tune like a Christmas choir.

There’s something engagingly tragic about the track “Bees Knees.”

I thought I was hallucinating when I saw a song called “G-Unit” here. This particular g-unit is not especially gangsta.

Even less gangsta is the track “Cute.” Sounds like we have some tender female guest vocals here.

On a far heavier note is a certain guitar riff on the track “Casino.” The distortion is cranked, and them guitar strings are being brutalized.  

This album sure has a wide emotional spectrum. Behold the variety at:

Other stellar options:

Ray Cavanaugh –

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