Review: Smallpools – Life in a Simulation

After countless stand-alone singles, EPs, and relentless touring, Smallpools have finally returned with their proper sophomore release called Life in a Simulation. The pop-rock band consisting of vocalist/keyboardist Sean Scanlon, drummer Beau Kuther, and guitarist/producer Mike Kamerman released their debut, Lovetap! in 2015, which seems like forever in regards to following up a popular debut. The marketing strategy for Life in a Simulation was fairly unique in that many of the singles released from the record slowly trickled out over the last year or so, including a great collaboration with Morgxn on the song “Slowdown.” While I feel the best may still be to come for Smallpools, this album definitely feels like a rebirth and a celebration of the uncertainty to the days that lie ahead.

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Liner Notes (October 16th, 2021)


This week’s newsletter looks at the new music I checked out this week (Kacy Hill, Coldplay, Knocked Loose, This Wild Life, Blackstarkids), as well as some old favorites I returned to or decided to give another shot (ManDancing, Turnover, Bad Luck., Citizen). And then there are some quick hits on a few first impressions (Snail Mail, Jim Lindberg, American Teeth) and a reevaluation of Taking Back Sunday after all these years. We’re jam-packed this week, and I still find some time to touch on some other media as well. As always, there’s a playlist of ten songs I enjoyed this week, and this week’s supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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