July 15, 2010

Now Sound: Varsity Drag's "White Cat In A Snowstorm"

Fans of Boston-based indie punk pace-setters Varsity Drag have been tantalized for months with the prospect of the release of the trio's take on "White Cat In A Snowstorm." The song was originally released by defunct U.K.-based Drag labelmates Ipanema, whose fronter Darren "Wiz" Brown died suddenly in late 2006. The song made its way into Varsity Drag's live sets as far back as April, when we saw the band deliver a thrilling headline set at P.A.'s Lounge in which the song was an electrifying highlight [review here]. Varsity Drag finally released the track today to its Bandcamp domicile and you can download "White Cat In A Snowstorm" right here for free or a fee, depending on how altruistic you're feeling at the mo'. We've embedded a stream below.

We won't say the song is surprisingly heavy, because really, the band's live shows have been bringing more and more energy every time we've seen them over the last year or so. But it is, in fact, heavy (and we suppose it is a bit surprising, since the song was tracked in fronter Ben Deily's home studio). Mr. Deily's guitar tone has a crunchy metal edge that he doesn't often indulge, and certain sections with precise dynamics (particularly drummer Josh Pickering's cymbal grabs at 1:20 or so) complement well the aggressive edge. Varsity Drag's "White Cat In A Snowstorm" is slated to be released on a long-planned compilation being put together by the threesome's U.K. label Boss Tunage, and Varsity Drag has toyed with the idea of releasing the tune later as part of an EP that would also include outtakes from the sessions for its most recent full-length Night Owls, which was released in late 2009 [review here]. The band's only current live commitment is a show at Maxwell's in Hoboken, NJ, Aug. 26.

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