ROMP were all bundled nerves and brash friction on the New Brunswick band’s 2015 debut EP, but their forthcoming first full-length, Departure From Venus, sees the four-piece letting some air into their sound, a transformation exemplified by the album’s lead single, “Last Year.” The track’s jumpy, prickly energy is similar to the likes of Now, Now or the dearly departed Chumped, and lead singer Madison Klarer has one of those voices that knows how to ground a song. Even when the lyrics tiptoe the border between clunky and profound — “Tick tock goes the clock/ It might be a bomb, and I don’t know anymore” — she’s more than earnest and endearing enough to pull it off. And when Klarer hits on a sweet note, the song goes for the jugular: “And if I do say so myself, I better find somebody else to help me out,” goes the communal and uplifting refrain. Listen via BrooklynVegan below.
Departure From Venus is out 3/4 via Bad Timing Records.