In his new music round-up this week, Getintothis’ Patrick Clarke finds dream-pop and psych-rock newcomers doing their genres proud, as well as some sumptuous tropical house from Australia.
To this writer there’s something vaguely terrifying about the word dream-pop. With over 40 weekly wades through the Soundcloud swamp in search of content for this column now behind us, in my experience the tags most often attached to the type of tune where an echo and effect pedal is expected to compensate for the flacid dross of ‘up-and-comers‘ empty, watery wash of a song.
But of course it doesn’t have to be this way; some of the finest albums ever recorded, from Slowdive‘s Souvlaki to Beach House‘s Teen Dream, can be held under said label – albums which really attack with true, emotive potency; lifting, pulling, hypnotising and propelling their patronage, as opposed to simply washing over them with a flouncy synth or three.
Yet all is not lost, for Supreme Blue Dream, the latest LP from Boston-born, L.A.-bred twosome Winter is secured in the line of said greats, an album that moves at times with catapulting strength, at others in a blissful glide, gorgeous, prepossessing strings, synths and brass meet a vocal that can soar like Hope Sandoval and snarl like Beth Cosentino.
On the subject of overused generic definitions, it seems like the perameters for whacking ‘psych‘ on your latest single are widening on a daily basis. Perhaps it’s no bad thing, and at the very least the wide scope’s keeping Psych Fest in business (Factory Floor count this year, apparently), yet thankfully there’s still room for a little purism, as London foursome Venice Trip amply demonstrate on new single Look Forward.
The group are psychedelic in the way The Yardbirds, The Doors, Syd Barrett‘s Pink Floyd were psychedelic, happy to climb skyward in soaring ascensions of spiraling guitar, to ride tidal waves of tempestuous drums and pepper their tunes with precociously pinpoint flips of rhythm and tone.
Rest assured, however, that this is not dad rock, for Venice Trip have every ounce of the modern alt-rock panache required to set the newly-flowered psych generation alight in their own part, drawing on, but never aping the antiquated.
Finally, Melbourne house duo Back Back Forward Punch‘s new single No Answer rises quite spectacularly above the often soundalike-ish quagmire of its genre courtesy of an infusion of palatial tropicalia to its instrumental, Laura Boland‘s vocals both understated and striking in their beguiling refrain.