Ever hear of the Toledo War between Michigan and Ohio in the 1830s? Unlike those pioneering days, perhaps in the 2010s we can peacefully coax some Buckeyes to the Detroit fold. Crafty drummer Matt Klein can sound altogether sharp and spastic, and singer Dean Tartaglia (who tours and blows a mean sax regularly with Detroit rock vets the Sights) wields a fuzz-doused bass while stomping various pedals and streaming atmospheric synthesizers under his reverb-distorted vocals. Tartaglia only met Klein a year ago; before their session with Shipps, they hadn’t even played out yet. An anything-goes approach served them well. They turned a blank canvas into a infectiously raucous record. They fired the first shot, but I think we can recruit them. —Jeff Milo
The Silent Lions’ EP is streaming on their bandcamp (silentlions.bandcamp.com), with physical vinyl copies promised this March.