Album Review: Choose Your Own Adventure’s “Aussie Rules”

By Abbie Ginis / February 22, 2019

Aussie Rules, the latest and greatest from DMV treasure Choose Your Own Adventure, was released earlier this month. The EP boasts five brand new tracks, featuring beloved veteran members Gina Sobel (flute, sax, vox), Ryan Lee (guitar, tambourine), Andrew Hollifield (bass), and Pat Hayes (drums). Sobel told DC Music Review that they included, “some dear friends/special guests to this album to make it even better.”

With the special guests tacked on and a reinvigorated confidence, CYOA do not disappoint.

CYOA is the future of jazz and funk, with whimsical improvisations, cohesion, and energy. Sobel added that the enhanced unity could be attributed to the fact that, “the core group can read each other’s minds.” And you definitely get that sense when listening to the album. Each note, bar, and riff, ebb and flow like synchronized breaths emitting from one being.

Sobel’s flute floats atop the opening track “My Name’s Johnny”, introducing the album. The song is packed with so many different twists and turns, with different instruments taking the lead, none of which overshadow each other.  In a similar tone as tracks off their first EP, the song welcomes returning fans with open arms, before spinning off in an edgier direction as the album carries on.

The diversity in sound and feeling on this EP is vast. “Scary Boi” is sophisticated, smooth, and, jazzy, featuring the virtuosic sax, while “Long Blink”, which immediately follows, is bright, summery, and vocal-heavy. Both are beautiful and smartly crafted, and, despite their differences, they feel like the both fit perfectly on the album.

With their instrument packed, jam-heavy tunes, Aussie Rules is alive, dynamic and exciting, keeping listeners on their toes. The band doesn’t rely on easy tropes or cheap tricks to make their music soar, but rather their innovation, creativity, and above all, passion.

You can tell that they’re having the time of their life creating and jamming, and because of that, listeners won’t be able to help but dance along too.




Listen to the album below, courtesy of Choose Your Own Adventure's Bandcamp page.

We would encourage you to purchase this album for $10  on their Bandcamp page. This purchase directly support the artist and helps them continue making music.

About the author

Abbie Ginis

Abbie Ginis has been a music junkie for as long as she can remember. Hailing from Michigan (Go Blue!), she is eager to continue to explore and be immersed in the DMV music scene. When she's not at concerts, Abbie can be found at the movies or longingly ogling at puppies.