Mike McFadden’s voice begs you to relate to him. The infectious grooves and soaring vocal melodies on Animal Years “Sun Will Rise” touch on the obvious themes of love and love lost from a personal lens. The album makes you wonder whether or not the band has read your diary and stolen some of your best moments for their songwriting material.

Animal Years simultaneously has singer/songwriter sincerity, four-piece rock aesthetic and indie folk twang. The lyrical narrative harkens back to Americana rock music, most notably on tracks “Let Go Of Your Head” and the title track “Sun Will Rise”, whereas tracks “Forget What They’re Telling You” and “Heart On Heart” make it clear that this is band is a rock group from Brooklyn.

“I don’t have a ton of musical background as far as family is concerned. I picked up a bunch of instruments and started teaching myself.” McFadden says about where he picked up his skills. “I write a lot of songs about where I’m from but what’s influenced me the most are the musicians I listened to when I was starting out.” He includes Bob Dylan, Kings of Leon, The Avett Brothers and Young The Giant on this list, and he is not far off. “I think we get compared to those bands a lot, and it’s because of my voice. I sing very high and loud.” That you do, Mike. Don’t ever stop.

The band is recently coming off an action packed SXSW schedule, doing 8 performances in 10 days. “We were all over the place.” McFadden says. “As a band you don’t get paid to do gigs at Southby, so we got in touch with some friends and through the kindness of strangers we ended up in someone’s back yard. We reached out to a camping company that sponsored us and sent us a huge tent and we just camped out.” For some reason, it doesn’t seem so hard to picture the Animal Years out mingling with nature.

Animal Years is now working on their follow-up record. “We were up in Woodstock recording half of it and now we are back down here working on it some more. We have a bunch of cool songs ready to go, but new music is our focus. We want to get on the road.”

On that road they are. To be sure, Atypical Sounds is following their every move.

Written by Alessandra Licul