I think I slept with Psychic Chasms under my pillow for the better part of 2009. Finally, Alan Palomo is hitting the 216 (Grog Shop, Tonight). Perhaps the glossiest of the the glow-fi movement of a couple of years ago, the music of Neon Indian has far more staying power than a majority of the johnny-come-lately acts that emerged in the same time frame. Since then, collaborations with The Flaming Lips and being covered by indie royalty have ben the result. For those who reside under rocks, check out my album review (to save a little writing time for me this afternoon) by clicking HERE. There are still tickets left, and plenty of time to get a babysitter and/or reschedule the plans. It's also a bonus that we get Neon Indian on a Saturday here. I think Clevelanders can roll out to hear a little 80's porn inspired, hazy electro-pop tonight, no? First beer's on me. Enjoy two things below. One, the track "Sleep Paralysist," which we've posted long ago. Additionally, we've got Palomo covering Cleveland's Darling, Cloud Nothings, and their track, "Local Joke."
Tag Archive: Neon Indian
I get behind anything Alan Palomo does, particulary enjoying his own uniquely defined niche within a broadening and watered down musical category. His Neon Indian work is simply a notch above all of the copy-cats. In fact, I miserably nod off and grow more and more averse to this type of stuff. Nonetheless, he's got chops and guts. Case in point. T. Rex's 1972 jam "Children of the Revolution" is covered nicely here. Of course, with the flavor that we're used to expecting.
Here We Go Magic is having an excellent 2010 to follow up a breakthrough 2009. Their second LP, Pigeons, is well worth the few benjamins and they're all set to embark on a fall tour with Dr. Dog. Luckily, the heavy western-state coverage still allows for one stop in Cleveland, where we love us some Dr. Dog. The show is on October 19 at The Beachland Ballroom. We've got a pretty steady stream of excellent shows arriving in town this fall, but be sure to sharpie-mark your calendars for this one. HWGM has just dropped this interesting spin on Neon Indian's 2009 summer anthem, "Terminally Chill," and I'm a fan right off the bat. Psychic Chasms got a nod on our best of 2009 list, due in large part to this track. Enjoy this version. You can also pick up Here We Go Magic's Pigeons from Secretly Canadian and their self-titled killer debut through Western Vinyl.
On Record Store Day, we had the pleasure of having Portland's Casey Dienel (AKA White Hinterland) in town to play The Beachland to close out the festivities on Waterloo. Beforehand, she rolled in and hit a half-hour DJ set at Music Saves. We've had our hands on Kairos, WH's full length LP, for quite awhile and it's still sitting atop my playlist. Generously filling and hauntingly satiating, the album is beautiful from top to bottom. Trolling the internets for music has its perks. Here's her cover of Neon Indian's "6669 (I Don't Know if You Know)." I don't have a lot to comment on this one, other than I love both versions. Enjoy, pals of the interwebs.
We’ve had lots of folks sending in emails asking when we’ll be arriving in Austin for SXSW, and that picture up above pretty much describes what our replies are. If the incredible decline in content over the last couple of weeks hasn’t communicated it, perhaps the sad face will. We’re pretty swamped over here, but certainly not dead. However, the slavemasters at our 9 to 5′s are keeping us out of Austin this year. The good thing is that our writer Justin will be in the Austin area, but probably doing more of the fan thing as opposed the writer thing. We’re officially drowning our sorrows in vats of Great Lakes beer and eating lots of donuts. Our calendars include SXSW next year, so hopefully we can stick it to the man or get promotions in the meantime. The interesting thing, however, is what happens to the blogosphere during these couple of weeks. Everyone sort of puts on blinders and focuses solely on the SXSW circus. Being bloggers that are not attending gives us a unique perspective. We’re still listening to tunes and evaluating. This is a boon for you. Because we’re pretty strapped for time, here’s a quick round up of the goodies that have been gaining speed this week. Enjoy this week’s list and follow us on TWITTER and FACEBOOK. We hope everyone has a safe trip down to Austin. Call me for my credit card number, and I’ll buy everyone a round or two.
This Week’s List
ARMS – Heat & Hot Water – In the wake of the unfortunate collapse of Harlem Shakes, Todd Goldstein decided not to go to sleep. We’ve posted a few sporadic MP3’s from his solo project turned full on band, ARMS, in recent months, and he’s apparently hitting a creative stride. The trio has just released a free EP for fans, aptly titled, EP, and the first MP3 offered is “Heat & Hot Water.” Harlem Shakes was certainly a pop act, but Goldstein’s guitar work shouldn’t be underscored. When we saw them play live last year, I noticed that Goldstein was a musical braniac, sitting behind the band and allowing his intricate guitar work blend in. On the ARMS project, Goldstein gets to move outside the restricting peramaters Harlem Shakes required. This is a good thing, folks. Snag the EP HERE and spread the word.
Keepaway – 5 Rings – Brooklyn trio, Keepaway, will release their EP Baby Steps via Lefse records on May 18th. There’s a lot going on in “5 Rings” and it warrants quite a few repeat plays. Synths, riveting percussion, and off-kilter melodies swirl on this thing. We’re not super hip on any back catalog, but there’s certainly promise with this track alone. In what seems to be the ongoing theme, Brooklyn outfits are testing musical boundaries and winding up with all the credit they deserve. Consider moving Keepaway into the discussion, as the EP should hit pretty heavily.
Japandroids – Darkness at the Edge of Gastown – Polyvinyl is releasing No Singles at the tail end of April. It’s a compilation of Japandroids’ first two EP’s that have long been out of print. Post-Nothing created a lot of waves last year, and it’s nice to get a taste of how the band was working before this album started gaining momentum. “Darkness at the Edge of Gastown” comes from the second EP, Lullaby Death Jams. The slicy metallic guitars are front and center. For folks aching for more Japandroids tracks to break shit to, look no further. On a side note, the band is touring soon with Avi Buffalo. We’ll be at that double-date with bells on.
Mimicking Birds – New Doomsdays - I don’t know a whole lot about Mimicking Birds, besides the fact that “New Doomsdays” has been circulating heavily in my playlist over the past week. Their self-titled LP just hit the shelves last week. Stereogum referred to their connections to Modest Mouse, and I can definitely hear it.
HEALTH – In Heat (Javelin Remix) – I’m not a huge HEALTH fan on record, but I’m super stoked about Javelin’s upcoming album. The remix play here is worth a listen, as the Brooklyn duo is about to turn water into wine with the new LP. Enjoy.
Oh No Ono – Eleanor Speaks (Caribou Remix) – Justin reviewed Oh No Ono’s LP a couple of months ago and referred to it’s varietal grandeur. Caribou’s upcoming album, Swim, also promises. The melting together of these two works well.
Dr. Dog – Stranger- Is it possible that Dr. Dog is the best live show on the planet? I’ve seen them three times, and I’d be willing to throw some money down on this debate. The bluesy hook-rocking foursome has now released two tracks from their forthcoming album, Shame, Shame, and smooth and ass-shaking sounds promise to continue with very little change. If you’re within a 200 mile radius of a Dr. Dog show, chalk it up as a huge missed opportunity if you don’t gas up the car and catch the show.
MGMT – Flash Delirium - I read an interesting article this week regarding “Flash Delirium,” which seems like a left turn for MGMT. The first released track from their upcoming album, the shifting and changes in the song no doubt polarize listeners. The band alluded to the creation of the song, pointing out that much of it was laughable at first and it’s almost as if they extended a short apology to fans that were put off by the track. To me, however, this is a change in MGMT that I can get behind. I’m digging it.
Wye Oak – I Hope You Die – I just missed the Wye Oak show in PA last night, and I’m kicking myself for not paying enough attention to my calendar. The buzz has been pretty hot on this band and for good reason. The hybrid mix of about ten different styles are done without sacrificing melody and artistry. Nothing seems forced, and tracks lay out as smooth as silk, also with enough rock to keep the blood pumping. The Pittsburgh stop was a long way from SXSW, but I’m going to venture the long traveling won’t tire them one bit.
Neon Indian – Sleep Paralysist – The glo-fi music can’t be that difficult to create, but I’ll always make the argument that it may be difficult to make it extremely well. Neon Indian is at the top of this game. The Small Black and Washed Out sound isn’t as colorfully rendered, and the newest leaked track from Neon Indian shows this. Like popping weeds in a summer yard, hooks and catchiness is abundant; the standards the Palomo employs are still front and center. Dude’s just simply creating excellent music.
As Brian mockingly mentioned earlier in the week, we’ve hit the winter doldrums here at Citizen Dick and have been swamped with our 9 to 5’s. Call it burnout, call it stress, but we’ve been neglecting our readership quite a bit. As we slowly crawl out of our ice caves and begin to hit you with more regular content, be patient. We’ve got some plans in the works to get a tish more organized around here. So if you’ve been coming back often and seeing the same post up for a couple days at a time, continue to visit. We’ll get our ducks in a row soon enough. In the meantime, follow us on Twitter HERE and on Facebook HERE. There’s been a flurry of tracks released recently, and, at least to me, March seems like a huge month musically. Perhaps it’s the surge of SXSW leaks to gear up for that, or maybe it’s just the month where things begin to thaw and people get excited again. This week’s track list includes plenty of tunes from folks you know, with a splash or two of new material that’s making its way around the web. From all of us here, we apologize for leaving you hanging for the past couple of weeks content-wise. That may just make our Springtime resurgence all the more inviting. We’ll begin with a couple album review teasers and move onto this week’s full track list.
Album Reviews Coming Soon:
We’ve been a little remiss in getting our full album reviews up on the site, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been paying attention. This week, I hope to get us all back into business and hit a few reviews of albums that have been doing well on our turntables. Here’s a taste of this week, although we hope to get some more things onto the site, as well.
Shearwater – Baby’s On Fire (Brian Eno Cover) - This track we caught over at Chromewaves and have been enjoying it thoroughly. It’s a few years old, but The Golden Archipelago just hit the shelves last week and I’ve been meaning to write plenty of words about how spectacular it is. Look for that this week.
White Hinterland – No Logic – We’ve had the White Hinterland album in our possession for so long, we almost forgot that it’s being released soon. This album is killer, and pulses and meanders through a whole gauntlet of pristine sound and ambient beauty. “No Logic” will no doubt be a crowd pleaser, but the entire album is a substantial effort. Check out the buzz HERE and get in line for the flurry of hype as Kairos nears release date on March 9.
This Week’s Track List:
She & Him – Thieves – As I’ve previously mentioned, Citizen Dick Brian was all over last year’s She and Him album, and I wasn’t completely on board. With the second released track from their upcoming LP, Volume Two I’m beginning to fall in a little more. M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel are excellent together, and this fact is impossible to ignore on both tracks that have been released. Merge is expecting big things from the album, and maybe I’ll begrudgingly allow myself a little more latitude on this one. Duos aren’t my thing, but the gorgeous arrangement here isn’t something I can knock at all.
We Were Promised Jetpacks – A Far Cry – The arena-hook laden energy of These Four Walls solidified the band as one of Scotland’s big three. Touring and being pals with labelmates Frightened Rabbit and The Twilight Sad has its perks certainly. Interestingly, the Scottish accent is heavy, but the music shoots pretty far away from the other two Scotland biggies. WWPJ is rooted in the buildup and the anthemic release. Last year’s release was big in sound and, at times, wickedly snarling. Our pals at FatCat are releasing their EP, The Last Place You’ll Look and “A Far Cry” is not a left turn from what we’re used to. The buzz is rising pretty steadily with these dudes, and those of you who are already fans will find this track to your liking.
Wounded Lion – Creatures in the Cave – This little ditty is borderline campfire singalong, except it’s loaded with string-breaking guitar treble. The LA based garage sound isn’t a new thing, but there’s something identifiable with this track that makes it different. To me, it’s the absolutely stomping palm muted rhythm of the track’s center section. Cymbals crash and danceable madness ensues. I guess, in short, it’s difficult not to like this song. It’s bruising and offsetting in all the right ways. In the Red records are fabulous at signing these kinds of acts, and if you’re a fan you really don’t need to look any further than their website HERE. Blank Dogs, The Intelligence, The Hunches, etc. Wounded Lion fits right in, and I’ve been playing this song all day.
So Many Wizards – Nico – This one we read about first at Aquarium Drunkard and loved it immediately. Produced by members of The Morning Benders, there is something addictive here. Perhaps it’s the organically melodic structure, or perhaps its that we’re all just enjoying this kind of thing lately. Check out the band’s website HERE for more.
Casiokids – Finn Bikkjen! – I didn’t know a whole lot about this Norwegian act until I haphazardly followed WOXY’s byLarm coverage last week. Apparently, Casiokids’ songs have been released throughout Europe via a string of 7″ singles and their full length is set to drop in the US soon. This song is everything I like about the 80′s throwback model that’s enjoying such success lately. The high pitched vocals and keyboard blips are all hushed by the enlarging surroundings of silence. If this doesn’t make sense, listen to the track. It sounds like the dudes are floating in space with woodblocks, quiet handclaps, and soothing synths all soaring away in excellent rhythm. This song is easily my go-to Spring anthem if we can ever get some thawing here in Cleveland.
Neon Indian – Mind, Drips (Summer Dregs Remix) – Brian and I have been in discussion about the glo-fi movement and, of course, who’s sitting at the top of the heap. For many folks, the completely muted and chill aspects of the genre are most important. For me, honestly, it’s the retro color associated with the movement that is easy to get behind. That’s probably why Neon Indian is easily putting out the best music of the genre. The Toro Y Moi album doesn’t even hold a candle in my opinion. Here’s the most recent remix, and it folds this track into something pretty cool.
Born Ruffians – Sole Brother – Warp Records is releasing a new LP from Born Ruffians on May 31st and we’re expecting it to be a solid effort. As “Sole Brother” is the first released track, snag this and let it serve as a taste of things to come. Lyrically, there’s some darkness here. Lyrically, that is. Otherwise, “Sole Brother” weaves through its minutes pleasantly, a gentler track than the lyrics would presage. We’re stoked for the end of May and this is a big reason.
The New Pornographers – Your Hands (Together) – Matador is set to release the next TNP full-length, Together on May 4th. AC Newman, Neko Case, and a whole slew of newly channeled inputs promise another excellent LP. This song doesn’t come from left field, nor does it leave listeners in a far away place. It’s crsip, loud, and promises more of the same on the forthcoming. Matador is allowing folks to pre-order and is including some goodies along with it. Check it out HERE.
Low Sea – Never Yours – It’s amazing how quick the internet works. I can guarantee that I was one of the first several bloggers to stumble upon “Never Yours” from the Irish act, Low Sea. Within three days, the track has been deemed worthy enough for Pitchfork’s Forkcast, and it leads me to believe that there are eyes watching us all. All this aside, check out the band’s CD Baby website for more information on their self released, Las Olas. Last Saturday I was turned to this site and listened to each track three or four times before emailing the band. The dark and ethereal rhythm is entrancing and there’s enough guts here to keep this from being labeled electronic or pop. If you like “Never Yours,” do yourself the favor of picking up the rest of the album. This duo has got buzz band written all over it.
Neon Indian’s Psychic Chasms is an album that every blogger in America was spinning nearly four months before its release date. It polarized from the start, and while I was in the approval camp from the onset, I was relatively pessimistic about its staying power and whether or not I’d still be interested in late December. This is my guilty pleasure, and I’m not ashamed. Like a steamy Ginger Lynn scene straight out of Dad’s porn collection, Psychic Chasms rips through twelve tracks of sonic bombast that resonate on multiple layers, all funneling toward some kind of pseudo-nostalgia that opens up pores of memory in all the brightest ways.
Outwardly, Alan Palomo’s expansive altering of pop largeness centers around flurries of sound, spiraling through layers of electronic blips, looping synth riffs, smooth and smoky vocals and shifting variety. Looking retrospectively, 2009 was not devoid of this kind of sound. Memory Tapes, Washed Out, Eliot Lipp all toyed with 80′s melted cassette tape nuances. All are pleasing to the ear, but not overly difficult to dissect musically. For me, Neon Indian’s effort stands above all of the other releases of similar ilk, largely because of the nostalgic relation it creates with the listener. The album’s opener, “(AM)” emits the flavors of mid 80′s summer romps at the skating rink with frenetic keys and screechy synthesizers. Mid-period Prince material is a reference often throughout the album. Hooks are usually morphed and slowed, angularly shifting throughout. These modes aren’t my bag musically. I’m a rock guy, and one dive through my album choices will express this. Conceivably, my age, however, makes this album spectacular. Palomo has one foot in experimentation and modern modalities, but another foot in the quirky goodness I grew up with. In my early September review of the album, I referenced a midway arc on the album, beginning with “Mind Drips,” marching through “Psychic Chasms,” and concluding with “Local Joke” as resembling a jaunce through an automated carwash. Literally, Palomo makes it difficult to determine whether the track’s moving forward or in reverse. This intriguing punch musically only glues it even more forcibly to past decades.
This album makes it to our “Best Albums of 2009″ list, not because of hype, but simply because of its pulsing aural color. Its vibrancy is infectious and has consistently provided enjoyment throughout the year. It’s a top shelf effort, regardless of how much the hype-driven mechanism spread it everywhere. If I had a pair of LA Gear’s and some slap bracelets, this album would be my soundtrack.
We’ve received plenty of emails recently asking us about our end of the year list. Readership, let’s begin.
Our inaugural year in the blogosphere has been spectacular, and although we have our customary mix of free and legal tunes below, we’re stoked to announce our “Best Albums of 2009″ coverage starting tomorrow. As we candidly use our Radio Dick portion as a platform to begin our coverage, we look backwards into the year that was and find ourselves completely satiated by full and successful year of emerging music.
We’ve tried our best this year to remain true to our initial ethos, which is to provide our readers with the best in music, focusing on the rave rather than the rant, and we’ve picked up a large readership along the way. It’s fitting to wrap everything up in grand scale. We propose to do just that. Having four writers certainly leads to its disagreements, and from email malediction to face-to-face assaults, we’ve weathered the storm and have 35 albums that, we feel, are the class of 2009.
As opposed to the mega-list that’s popular among bloggers, we’ll take a different approach. Beginning tomorrow, we will have individual takes on our favorite records. Expect multiple posts daily as we tear through our list. We will link to tags and all you’ll need to do is click on the “Best Albums of 2009″ tag to see a full lists of albums as we add to it daily. We love writing about music at Citizen Dick, and if an album is worth mentioning as successful, our plan is to unpack our bags and tell you why. Our album list should conclude at the end of the year, accordingly wrapping up a hugely successful year at our blog, mirrored with a stellar year of music.
First, enjoy today’s Radio Dick. I’ve posted a host of legal tunes that are buzzing around the internet, including a warbly and raw live cut from NYC, where Will Sheff performed a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain.” As Shearwater will enter 2010 with a new album, I’ve got two tracks on here. New Shout Out Louds, Art Museums, Ted Leo, etc. It’s a killer Sunday list.
As far as our “Best Of” coverage, check back daily, follow us on Twitter, subscribe to our email feed, RSS, etc. We’re going to blow this out to end 2009. Join us.
Editor’s Note: Usually, I use Sundays to rant and rave about just about anything and I’m just as likely to discuss broad topics about music as I am my cat or wrangling at Home Depot. I’ve been fairly off the radar for the last couple of weeks while Brian, Rob, James, and Justin have been covering the album review duties superbly. Rob’s debut review of The Ettes earlier this week was solid and we’re glad to have him on board. Justin’s finally getting over his Canadian hangover and Brian has officially shaken the flu. Wrap all of this together with James’ news that he’s attempting to make the big move to The Big Apple and it all signifies a pretty hectic week at Citizen Dick. To update our regular readers, we’ve seen another spike in readership and we’re super stoked to have all of you on board. Several emails we’ve received this week have humbled us and we appreciate all of the positive feedback y’all send our way.
This photo of a local Home Depot could have been taken right here in Cleveland. The facade of the store looks entirely similar to the one down the street from me. The Massachusetts home improvement warehouse is exactly like the Cleveland Home Improvement Warehouse. I’d imagine these two dudes are about to get royally screwed regardless of which entrance they choose. See, my local Home Depot doesn’t have this many patrons. The parking lot is usually half full and the employees wander aimlessly around the store looking for something to do. You’d think they’d be able to span the idle time helping the few customers that DO need something. Unfortunately this isn’t the case, and I’ll never purchase another thing from this clusterfuck of an organization. We’re now going on day 30 of my carpet installation project. I made the horrible decision (much like these two gentlemen) to go through Home Depot to purchase carpet for my basement, and while the company had no problem coming in and ripping the old carpet out, installing the new stuff seems to be less of priority. As I type this post, the installers have now skipped their third scheduled installation appointment at my home, and if I had a blowtorch and jug of petro, I’d make a pyre out of my local Home Depot and drive to Massachusetts to take this one out just for fun. Seven-day installation guarantee, my ass. I’ve skipped a golf outing, a date, and a night of binge drinking to sit around and wait for the carpet van that never comes. I’d heard the naysayers urging me to go direct from a carpet outlet, but I fell for the name game, and I’m paying the price for it. I mention all of this for no other reason than to urge our reader-base to join in on my boycott. We could have fifty feet of snow here and Cleveland and I’d shovel my driveway with my hands before I’d give them one cent for a shovel. If I could yell at these east-coast dudes to turn the fuck around, I would. If they don’t show for a fourth time, I’ll walk in and start chucking full paint cans at the employees.
Luckily this weekend found me in my hometown of Cincinnati, catching some high school football (my dad’s a coach), and the long drives afforded me plenty of time to catch up on my listening pile. It was also good to get away from the nonsense drama of teaching high school kids. It’s homecoming season and the cut-throat importance of electing a king and queen seems to supersede the gift of obtaining a good education. I needed to get out of my school for a couple of days and relax. If I hadn’t, I’d be the teacher on the news getting fired for rolling into a dance with a spiked bottle of fruit punch tucked under my blazer. All kidding aside, kids are nuts. End of story. In any event, the long drive down I-71 is usually pretty care-free, as the straight shot from Cleveland to Cincinnati is a cruise-controller’s dream. Before I left, I snagged a lot of the new MP3′s we’ve been jamming to and created my playlist. I spun this exact list several times through during my march to southern Ohio and figured I’d share the wealth. The Sunny Day Real Estate reissue is coming out soon, and they’ve allowed “Seven” for download. Neon Indian’s been on constant repeat and Palomo’s remix of Au Revoir Simone’s “Another Likely Story” kept the ride pretty energized. There’s a healthy mix of post-punk sneer and light hearted fare on today’s Radio Dick. This entire playlist kept me fueled up for the 8 hours of driving and even though I didn’t realize I’d head back to the Home Depot debacle, but maybe a few run throughs of this can keep me from torching the place.
Enjoy the tracks and head back on Monday for a week of emerging music reviews. Enjoy the work week, folks, and don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.
I may be a bit obsessive-compulsive, but I have to believe people digest albums like I do. I tend to become a fanboy immediately with albums that jolt me from the starting gun, relentlessly focusing on three tracks that grab my attention first. Next, I eventually grow tired of the three standout tracks and move onto another section of three songs that I originally thought mundane and less noteworthy. Usually this results in a battle of sorts. I love those original tracks that drew me to the band’s sound, but inevitably wind up pushing them backwards in the playing rotation. Inexplicably, however, there always seems to be three tracks on every album that fail to make it into my pleasure-filled musical database. Try hard I may, but it’s an extremely rare occasion that an entire record is not just enjoyable to me from top to bottom, but noteworthy. Neon Indian’s Psychic Chasms is a debut that took a little time to wrap my brain around fully, but the fruits of ear-labor have never failed me yet. It’s an album rich with energy and a hard to pinpoint coolness that’s achieved through a varietal and shifting blitz of sound. Not a track is worthless, and in fact, if you listen to records like I do, the progression will leave no slag and the enjoyment tightens with each subsequent listen.
In my review of Deastro’s Moondagger earlier this year, much of the review focused on the reminiscent aura that certain electronically based outfits have been dishing out recently. For a self-professed alt-folk fanatic, it’s a pretty awkward admission that Alan Palomo (Neon Indian) creates the kind of music that knocks me straight out my LA Gear’s and into a completely fulfilling nostalgic mode. The central conundrum regarding electro-throwback music is that I have literally no way to merely describe a deeply rooted vibe. Typically, reviewing albums involves at least some shred of musical understanding. Although Psychic Chasms takes me far, far away from my comfort zone, I can’t stop playing it. The initial run through begins slamming “(AM)” at the listener, starting with a cylindrical synthesizer screechy sound that melts into the background as a nasty badass 80′s bouncy rhythm kicks in. Softly delivered vocals juxtapose the hard hitting grooves and busybody Danelectro attack. It’s this album opener that reeks of quirky mid 1980′s summers at the roller rink, super-rope licorices and, believe it or not, mid-period Prince material. Slick guitars and pinched out and looping sounds are splattered through each track. The retro hooks are encapsulated by spookily morphed and slowed down synth riffs that warble alongside nearly every song.
Perhaps it’s a trite over-generalization to assume Neon Indian is swinging for nostalgic fences here, as Palomo is extremely adept at spiraling sound mixtures. At times, the stacks of dominant sounds all layered on top of one another are quite brilliant. The midway arc of three songs, “Mind, Drips,” “Psychic Chasms,” and “Local Joke” point to wider and expansive takes on pop predecessors. At the heart of all three is a simplistic drum machine, aptly keeping time while each track spins and rises in sound-intensity. It’s easy enough to peg this as an album with repeat value for ambiance alone, but deeper listens unveil ripping keyboard arrangements, frenetic blips and flurries of wavering riffs. “Ephemeral Artery” links up a straining synthesizer behind everything, and like a car in an automated washer, it’s difficult to tell whether the songs moving forward or I’m moving in reverse. Super intriguing.
For me, however, what nails this album down is it’s drenching mid 80′s aura. “(If I Knew, I’d Tell You)” is forty-eight seconds of fuzzy and shaky brilliance that hearkens back to the most memorable early 80′s porn. If that’s a weak observation, our readership will have to accept my apologies, because my mind wanders constantly to those awkward instances of my youth, poorly dubbed Ginger Lynn fully included. To summate the value of this album, it’s important to first enter with a specific direction in mind. Like a choose-your-own-adventure book, this record consistently pulses from start to finish, and depending on listener preference, it can dive into nostalgia or enrich in a modern sense equally as well. The album hits the shelves on October 13th, but we’ve got a few tracks here to tide you over in the meantime. If you’re digging these, you’re going to be fully impressed next month.