Blake Cormier and the Awkward Situation: 'Blake Cormier and the Awkward Situation' 

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Recorded by the San Antonio expatriate Cormier with minimal help and released on Christmas day, this album is a welcome surprise. Following right along with the general aesthetic of Cormier's old band, Druggist, these songs are tight alt-rock exercises, devoid of unnecessary adornments, catchy, and overflowing with an occasionally melodramatic angst. Gone here, however, is any of the artifice of Druggist's catalog, now replaced by a refreshing musical and lyrical directness. Emotionally satisfying and infectious, with guest spots from Saytown songstress Carly Garza, this is an album local indie-rock fans will want to claim as their own. Download it for free at awkwardsituation.bandcamp.com.

★★★ ½ (out of 5 stars)

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