Estocar is an interesting hybrid. The band’s influences are fairly easy to spot, but after listing them out, there’s no way you’d think they could make any sense together. But somehow on newest album Faux Fiction, they do.
That said, Estocar is still an acquired taste, beginning with lead singer/guitarist Lance Hofstad’s atypical voice that sounds like a more gothic version of the Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie mixed with some David Byrne and Fred Schneider. Matched with staccato rhythms and post-punk energy courtesy of drummer Sean Kearney that’s equal parts Wire, a hint of Dead Boys, and even some early dBs jangle pop, and you have a band that sounds unlike any other.
The easiest entry point on Fiction is Catch My Drift, a classically structured verse-chorus-verse tune with a sunny melody drifting behind Hofstad’s vocals. A Lot of Dust Kicked Up and Menage a Fatwa boast elements reminiscent of Killing Joke while 1000 x yes is a dreamy, Psychedelic Furs-esque tune.
What sets Estocar apart, however, is the way each song’s insistent groove burrows into your brain. You begin listening to Faux Fiction thinking you’ve never heard anything like it. But as you settle in, your toes start tapping and you discover an overwhelming desire to shake your ass. Who doesn’t like that?