Wisconsin-born, New York-based indie rock trio Yellow Ostrich return with their follow-up to their 2011 debut album. The band’s sound and even its lineup has expanded since the debut. As frontman Alex Schaaf says, the first album “was a guy in a bedroom. Strange Land is a band.” And he’s right about that; aside from the fact that band now boasts a full roster of members, Strange Land feels more fully realized than previous outings by Yellow Ostrich. The first half of the album is the strongest, as the middle feels like it starts to meander a bit aimlessly. “Marathon Runner” is the lead-off single, and is an excellent, forward moving rock song, an easy favorite from the album. I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve had several days where I just listen to “Marathon Runner” over and over again on during my commute to or from work. It’s just that good, folks. (There’s also a pretty interesting, albeit cryptic, website centered around the song, which you can peruse here.) “The Shakedown” is a stand-out track from the back half of the album, full of noisy guitar riffs and distorted vocals.
Check out Yellow Ostrich tomorrow night at the Empty Bottle. The show starts at 9:30 pm; 1,2,3, and Tin Tin Can open the show.