Scimshaw's epic, swirling rock features a strong '80s vibe that recalls bands like Simple Minds and Human League, but with stronger guitars. It's easy to lose track of where they are at times, since each song serves up at least a couple of moods and movements. But the peculiarly propulsive grooves prevent you from focusing too hard on the passing scenery. Black Winter benefits from Jess Kazarick's Debbie Harry-like voice, and the album's catchiest track, "Slow Motion Effect," works in slinky Roxy Music synth-rock territory before settling into an infectious syncopated refrain. Scrimshaw's craftsmanship and sonic detail suggest plenty of promise. — Chris Parker
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