Alt-rock outfit Itch recently dropped their sophomore album, entitled Round 2, via Latticesphere Records.
Formed in Belgrade, Serbia, in 2010, Itch dropped their debut album, Lullulu, in 2012, followed by playing beau coup gigs, as well as festivals such as Strumica Open Air, Beer Fest, and Urban Fest in Osijek. Creative differences resulted in the departure of the band’s vocalist and bassist. The band’s new and current lineup consists of: Iva Kostić, aka Caustic (vocals); Vihor Ristić, aka Rust Cool (bass); Filip Stanišić, aka Phil Grey (drums); and Dušan Simić, aka Simon Dex (guitar).
Round 2 encompasses nine-tracks, beginning with “Prison Disco,” a funk-lite-flavored alt-rock tune topped by Kostic’s dulcet, penetrating voice. A fat rumbling bassline and crisp percussion drive the rhythm, as Simic’s guitar infuses the tune with beefy tones, along with skiffing riffs.
Speaking subjectively, the best tracks on the album include “Tree Men,” which opens on elegant shimmering guitar colors flowing into a deep crunching rhythm, followed by surging guitar dynamics, followed by a cool harmonic shift into a pulsing hard rock melody. Reminiscent of Paramore, this track flexes with impressive sonic muscle.
“Captain Love” travels on cool jazzy savors, featuring a stellar bassline by Ristic. As the harmonics ramp up, the melody takes on resonant alt-rock momentum washed with heavy guitars and sparkling accents, as Kostic’s luscious formidable voice imbues the tune with fierce crystalline timbres.
“Sun Will Rise” opens on thick metal guitars transitioning to melodic nu-metal textures riding a measured rhythm. When the chorus enters, the music mousses up to heaving symphonic levels, rife with mesmerizing impetus. Rather than being overpowered by the harmonics, Kostic’s voice slices through with enticing tangs.
“Yura” blends heavy metal and vibrating industrial flavors into a powerful sonic concoction. Frequent harmonic shifts imbue the tune with nuances of muscular tension and wicked dark force. An eerie cackle from Kostic injects the tune with spine-chilling tones.
With Round 2, Itch delivers contagious rhythms and innovative harmonic shifts, all crowned by the lush, blistering voice of Iva Kostic.