This is TALIA. A 3 piece of angst driven indie rock from Paris, France (although their social media now lists Los Angeles as well). Pictured above are guitarist/singer Nicolas Costa, drummer Hervé Goardou, and bassplayer/backing vocalist Alice Thomas. They excel in creating nuggets of rock, wrapped in tight pop structures, with that flair of grungy garage rock pumping through the undercurrent. Bands like Foo Fighters, Sunny Day Real Estate, Guided By Voices, The Pixies, Lemonheads, Sonic Youth, The Breeders, Soul Asylum… most early 90’s ‘college rock’ mined this approach to great success. TALIA picks up where those bands left off and continues rocking in the clubs. In fact, the band opened for Soul Asylum at the notorious Whiskey A Go Go in Los Angeles this last summer of 2016. Along with opening slots for bands like The Reverend Horton Heat, The Datsuns, and a scheduled upcoming date with Nashville Pussy… TALIA are getting those all important opening gigs that will help them find an appreciating audience for their song-driven, heart-on-sleeve rock. The best trick TALIA pulls off is being guitar heavy and edgy with a sense of aggression, while avoiding any metal posturing and keeping their feet rooted firmly in indie rock territory. Along with an ability to wrap a hook into most every song on this release, any number offered could be the ‘single’. There is an ebb and flow of intensity on many of these songs, accomplished by pulling and pushing the bass or guitar out completely, or shoving the faders up full on and blowing the levels over the top. This lends a good degree of texture and keeps things fresh from song to song. All of this can be felt on the band’s third release, “Thugs They Look Like Angels”. The album opens with, ‘American Bride’. A guitar infused give and take of an intro sets up the pumping chorus. TALIA use an attack and retreat approach to a lot of their songs, with clever attention paid to breaking the song apart by pulling back elements and then building them back up again with a rocking effect. In their grimier moments, TALIA ride the distortion with reckless effect, creating noisy fun jams that careen past the listener at well under 2:00 minute length. Witness ‘It’s Been Oh So Long’ Big pounding rock drums with a grumbling spine of bass supports the driving, ‘Johnny Bait’ and serves up one of the bigger songs on “Thugs…”. ‘Self Induced Fever’ has some guitar licks that smack with more attitude than they should for such earnestly crafted indie rock. ‘The Flood’ uses a more subdued acoustic intro to bring the song in before making it dirty with some bigger, loud electric stomping chords. The Soul Asylum comparisons are valid here, especially with Costa’s attention to catchy vocal lines. “Thugs They Look Like Angels” is the followup to “Cockroach Killer” (2008) and “Permanent Midlife Crisis” (2013). To hear more music and get more info on TALIA, check their Bandcamp site here.