This Is Ivy League self-titled debut full-length

This Is Ivy League is a project made up of Cobra Starship bassist Alex Suarez and guitarist Ryland Blackington, also of TAI TV fame with his infamous character Guy Ripley. These two go back much further than when they both got caught up in the whirlwind of their fame with the other band.

Suarez and Blackington met back in high school in Boca Raton, Fl. after Blackington moved down from his home in Wilmington, Ma. Suarez , originally from Connecticut, and Blackington hit it off almost immediately. They never formed a band together in the early years of their friendship but that would change later down the line after they refound each other in an ironic twist of events.

When Suarez went to culinary school and Blackington to college to pursue his degree in acting, the two fell apart. They were later reunited when they found out that, through an internet site, they had both moved to New York City to pursue their careers and were now living mere blocks from each other once again! After their rekindled their friendship they decided it was time to buckle down and finally try their hands at starting a band together, and I must say the end product isn’t too shabby.

I didn’t know what to expect while I was waiting for my CD load into iTunes. I hadn’t ever listened to their music before, despite having known they were in a side project besides Cobra Starship together. Out of stubbornness I decided to not lurk their MySpace and just listen to those songs, instead listening to the whole CD front to back as soon as I was able to. I wasn’t expecting anything like the other efforts they’re involved in, and my guess was certainly right on that. While Cobra has an upbeat funky feel to it, This Is Ivy League has a sound that takes you straight back to the days when The Beach Boys were blasted on the radio in every teenage girl’s bedroom.

All of the songs have the same melodic, down-to-earth, just back-to-basics sound that you’d expect to hear at a beach party in the 1950’s. A very raw and wholesome sound even the strictest of parents couldn’t say no to. While a few of the tracks are slower and likely to help you lull yourself off into a nice nap, the rest would be much better enjoyed sitting pool side with a cool drink in one hand, flip-flopped foot tapping against the concrete along to the beat. The sound definitely isn’t for everyone and in my opinion would be better taken in by an older audience in comparison to the average age of the people who probably know of the band. That certainly doesn’t mean that the younger crowd can’t like it as well, especially since the more classic rock sounds of folk music and ‘parent approved’ tunes seems to be making a come back as of late.

Overall I can’t say anything bad about the CD, the melodies are too smooth and the lyrics too catchy for that, but I won’t be singing it’s praises from mountain tops, either. The CD left me somewhere in between liking it and just feeling sort of eh about it, though that may easily be blamed on the relaxing sound reverberating out of my Macbook at the moment, courtesy of This Is Ivy League themselves. So to sum it up as best as possible, if you like The Beach Boys you will most likely absolutely fall in love with This Is Ivy League.

This Is Ivy League: myspace

*Hanna Marie

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One Response

  1. […] Cobra Starship: website | myspace | Warped review Alex Suarez’ side project This Is Ivy League: website | myspace | album review […]

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