The energy of rock and the emotions of soul come together in Pacanomad’s debut five-track EP Restless. The four-member Canadian indie rock and R&B band, comprised of Chantel Rivard (vocals), Nick Cifaldi (guitar), Dave Ball (bass), and Zack Stewart (drums), build on the strength of Rivard’s smoky vocals and Cifaldi’s guitar skills to create infectious and oftentimes groovy songs.
The EP begins with “Heaven Can Wait”, immediately introducing listeners to Rivard’s passionate vocals. The track, like most of its successors, evokes the imagery of a smoky bar, a femme fatale dressed entirely in black, supported by fedora-topped instrumentalists. The slower title track, “Restless”, is also full of emotion but this time, not just in the vocals. The guitar solos almost sound like a second vocalist. Poignant and introspective, it packs quite the punch.
The infectious “I Lost You” approaches jazz territory; a remake of the song with horns and a couple of female backup singers would put it smack dab in it, but the electric guitar keeps it at the rock-jazz border, and hints at early Santana. The clean electric guitar-led introduction to “Tell Me Not to Doubt” defines the entire upbeat, toe-tapping track. While as with all the other songs, the vocals form the topmost layer by far, the other instruments (bass and drums) shine particularly well here too.
The hint of reggae in “’Till It’s Mine” is subtle enough to not distract from the rock-jazz-R&B feel of the EP. As the beat is higher in this closing track, the EP leaves the listener with a bounce in his or her step.
The songs on the EP manage to be energetic and soothing at the same time. Rivard’s sultry, seductive, and soulful voice makes for a terrific listen. The composition of the songs complement her vocals, which are also matched by the high quality of the instrumentation provided by her bandmates.
Pictures provided by Independent Music Promotions.
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