Noon - EP
It may seem incongruous that Drax Project make great pop music, given the quartet's early days studying jazz at college in their native New Zealand. But all the same, Noon has a party vibe to fit any setting—from twilight warm-up to peak-hour motivator to late-night/early-morning cooldown. Credit the band's intuitive rapport, strengthened from days busking on the streets of Wellington. Ben O’Leary’s snake-charmer guitar combines with hooky vocal melodies (“Prefer,” “Only Us”) for a winning dance-floor combination that's like Ed Sheeran at his most caffeinated. DP’s mini stories keep the mind engaged as well: “Woke Up Late” is an amusing day-in-the-life tale of a nocturnal clubber, while “Toto” invokes the Wizard of Oz sidekick as a metaphor for staying open to adventure.