The So Help Me's

The So Help Me's

 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
BandAlternativeIndie

Existential indie rock from Oklahoma City.

Band Press

Top 20 EPs of 2016 – Cellar door music group

#3. Relativity EP by The So Help Me's
Kicking the year off on a high note, Relativity EP heralded a bold new presence in the Oklahoma music scene. Since releasing it in January, The So Help Me's have recruited an enthusiastic following by tirelessly playing shows in and out of the state while working toward a highly anticipated full-length record.

While that eventual album simmers, the EP remains the band's calling card, and it does an excellent job. On the surface is an indie rock sound with captivating lead harmonies, but a peek under the hood reveals contemplative thoughts and inventive arrangements that beckon a whole new world at this band's fingertips.

There isn't much to say about Relativity EP that wasn't already covered in this blog's review at 2016's outset except that, perhaps, it is even better than initially suggested. This is one of the most ambitious, hardworking, and promising groups in Oklahoma City today, so be sure to catch The So Help Me's while it's still easy to do so.

Recommended track: "Apollo"

Debut EP from the So help Me's is existential bliss – Oklahoma Gazzette

The So Help Me’s aren’t afraid to take chances on The Relativity EP. It doesn’t take an Einstein to realize those risks pay off in a big way.

The self-described existential rock band is led by the tandem vocal efforts of Lindsey Cox and Bailey Pelletier. The Oklahoma quintet’s debut, four-song EP pulls off a dreamy mesh without being overly ethereal. A full-length follow-up album is planned for later in 2016.

The first track, “Blue Fox Drive,” is the EP’s best and most addicting song. The lyrics and clean vocals are immediately apparent. Cox and Pelletier sound similar, yet complement each other so well.

“Blue Fox Drive” is Relativity’s most kinetic moment. The words might sound light and gentle, but the drums and bass hit hard enough to keep this band rooted. An echoing outro ushers us into the next song in a thrilling way. Even after the first play, the listener can’t help but wonder what else The So Help Me’s have in store.

On “Trails,” we’re shown once again that the band is at its best when Cox and Pelletier are harmonizing together. Again, the precision rhythm from drummer John Stewart is a standout. The third song, “Apollo,” is appropriately named. It’s a more spacey, even-keeled moment than the previous two tracks. It’s a song of search and journey and might be the band’s best example of lyrical prowess.

“I cannot make the stars move; I am just one man,” the lyrics say. Much of the song — and Relativity in general — explores the smallness young people often face when first forced to take the world and its pressures head-on.

The closing number, “Wolf Mountain,” sets off in a marching cadence with folky vocals. It’s a fitting but not spectacular end to the EP, which at four songs and about 20 minutes, is a perfect length for the material included.

Though not a flawless release, the band’s debut project doesn’t include much to quibble about. The challenge moving forward will be translating its formula for success into a full-length format. The So Help Me’s soft wonderings and trancing backdrop worked well as a brief listen but could play itself out in a stretched runtime.

It’s no challenge the young musicians aren’t capable of meeting, especially if they keep thinking outside the box. On more than one occasion on Relativity, the band breaks into a captivating and unexpected outro or bridge. As long as Cox and Pelletier are harmonizing together, it’s hard to imagine this act turning too stale.

The dreaminess and existentialism The So Help Me’s refer to are primarily rooted in the vocal performance and lyrics. It flirts with the avant-garde, but honestly, a lot of the singing is reminiscent of an older church of folkloric sound.

It’s not clear who in the group is responsible for writing the songs, but they’re doing a good job. There are times the band could benefit from being more straightforward and less mystic or philosophical, but part of Relativity’s appeal is the need to relisten and fully digest the message. It’s easy to see the EP appealing to a young, local crowd seeking guidance in a state that sometimes seems dead-set against progress.

To stream The Relativity EP, search The So Help Me’s on Soundcloud or visit thesohelpmes.com.

Print headline: Help sought, The So Help Me’s are primed for the future following a strong introductory EP.

Soft hued okc band toys with indie rock formula on smart compositionally focused debut. – Cellar Door Music Group

With its thoughtful approach to sonic texture and vocal harmony, the new debut EP from Oklahoma City five-piece The So Help Me’s is a stellar start to a new year in local music. Although The Relativity EP runs a mere four tracks, it refuses to sell itself short on ideas and ambition.

Kicking off with a soft bed of clean, blossoming electric guitar, opening track “Blue Fox Drive” doesn’t show its cards up front. Rather, it sinks into a bright, familiar alternative rock haze for a solid minute before jumping into one of its multiple progressions. To detail every shift in structure would be to spoil the song for first-time listeners, but the final refrain is worth highlighting. Most trailing refrains in contemporary songs are satisfied to simply repeat over and over, but “Blue Fox Drive” reinvents aspects of the tempo, tone, rhythm, and counterpointed vocals with each cycle. That it does so in a straight-faced flurry of only 40 seconds is commendable.

The following two tracks, “Trails” and “Apollo,” are smoother and less adventurous, instead opting to nail down a more focused sound. “Trails” is a particularly interesting meld of indie songwriting and math rock overtones. Trembling guitar effects nicely creep in and out of the far reaches of the stereo mix.

“Apollo,” on the other hand, keeps the instrumental elements at a distance, providing either sustained textures or melodic echoes as a fluid backdrop to the band’s two vocalists. This provides a clearing for their understated delivery to briefly peek into a high register for some of the most lovely and expansive vocal harmonies on the record. Notably, the last leg gets noisy and reinstates the drums largely absent from the preceding few minutes. This is a neat moment, as it mirrors the final lyrics of “Apollo,” proclaiming “I only hear the war drums” as it transitions directly into the closing track.

“Wolf Mountain” jumps immediately into a new 6/8 time signature and gradually builds a soft glow around the militaristic snare rolls. It intermittently toggles from its pretty flourishes to a dry 4/4 pep that, while keeping the flow fun and engaging, tends to chop down the song every time it wants to build. The better surprise here are the lyrics, which are the most tangible on the album. They introduce scene after scene of poetic, reminiscent small-town imagery instead of the first-person soul searching found in much of the EP leading up to this point. Lines range from borderline abstract (“Smoking from an apple, kissing in a chapel / Jesus feeling older every day”) to concrete and declarative (“Hickory trees and west coast dreams made Oklahoma so dull”), yet “Wolf Mountain” feels no less on a quest for meaning than its predecessors.

The lush arrangements on The Relativity EP rise to a sweet, wordless finale that tops the album off with utmost satisfaction, a sign of the compositional background The So Help Me’s bring to the table. Unlike most bands pouring out of the University of Central Oklahoma, they hail from jazz and classical teachings rather than contemporary music ones. As a result, their sound is loose and exploratory, but their execution is reasoned and on point. They aren’t seasoned yet, but their engine is sturdy and accelerating in an exciting direction.

The So Help Me's LIVE! – KOKH Fox-25

We were entertained by 4 members of the 5-piece group (our studio is too small to accomodate a drummer). The group’s members hail from all corners of Oklahoma, and their collective schooling in jazz, classical, and contemporary music combine in a combination they call "existential rock." They formed in 2014.

Normally the group's music is a bit more electrified. Today they were primarily acoustic, and performed a brand-new song they wrote just for their appearance on our show (isn't that COOL?). The name of this brand-new song is "No New Oceans."

They were on our show to promote the AMPFest, a day-long celebration of music by women. The festival takes place SATURDAY (Aug 27) in Automobile Alley in OKC. The So Help Me's are scheduled to perform at 4:10PM.
The group formed in 2014. Singers Lindsey Cox and Bailey Pelletier talked to Shelby about the band and AMPFest. Scroll down from the top and look for the clip title So Help Me's Interview.
For a full line-up of the acts, go to