Already gaining recognition on the East Coast, you may have caught the Upwelling opening for Third Eye Blind … if you saw them on the other side of the country. But for those of you who haven’t left the cozy confines of California or who don’t read Spin religiously (I’m looking at you, aspiring-hipster kid!), let me introduce you to the Upwelling.

Their new album sounds like the singer and the lyricist cheated on the rest of Pedro the Lion with the entirety of the National (minus the vocalist, I suppose) and came up with An American Stranger. With a good mix of 9/11 memorial (“Ladder 116”), to the very indie-sounding “Garden” and the insatiably catchy “Wanderlust,” their only problems are that their lyrics tend towards the emo-dramatic in some songs and their tunes kind of blur together if you’re just casually listening.

As a whole, An American Stranger is a solid, listenable album.

Grade: B+


An American Stranger is currently available.