Monday, March 24, 2014

aquarius write up

The opening minute or so of "Heal", the first track on Deserve, at first blush seems like it could give very much the wrong impression of these Canadian noise poppers, although the more we listen to Deserve, the more it seems like maybe it was in fact ultimately the all together RIGHT impression. The record opens with a squall of swirling feedback, what sounds like multiple guitars unfurling layer upon layer of feedback, and even when the song kicks in proper, it's mostly a crumblingly distorted single chord, over pounding caveman drumming, until all of a sudden, that noisiness coalesces into some impossibly perfect pop, a twisted chunk of nineties style indie rock jangle, wistful and super melodic and crazy catchy, albeit, plenty noisy and fuzzy, distorted and blown out, and from there on out, the song swings deliriously from lilting, loping, Sebadoh-style lo-fi pop, to a full bore, buzzing psychedelic sort-of-chorus/refrain, howled vocals over one of those chord changes that gives you chills, the sort of thing most bands struggle to come up with, but throughout the course of Deserve, these guys seem to toss off those moments like there was some limitless supply, and who knows? Maybe for these guys there is. Deserve gives us no reason to think otherwise. But before we can get to more of those moments, the band finish off "Heal" with a full two minutes worth of abstract psychedelic feedback noise drenched drift, almost as if in the studio, they just leaned their guitars against the amps, and stepped out for a smoke. But it's that willful, listener baiting noisiness, and the fact that of "Heal"s six and a half minutes, less than three is proper 'song', that helps balance the group's popsmithery, with a sort of sneering punk rock energy, that as you might imagine, finds its way into even the poppiest moments here. And there's something about two minutes of droned out noise, that when the second track "Set Me Back" finally explodes, there's a sense of sonic relief, that only adds to what is yet another glorious slab of blown out fuzz pop, big guitars, deep crooned vocals buried in the mix, melodies to die for, and another one of those choruses, that sounds like it was plucked right out of some classic Dinosaur Jr jam, but Weed's sound is more muddy and murky, and all the better for it, swirling and psychedelic, every song here, sounds like one of those songs or one of those bands that should have been huge, but instead, stayed your little secret, the best band nobody else knew about, understood, or in most cases had ever even heard, or heard of. And that totally taps into something most music nerds hold near and dear, and positions Weed, no matter how popular they get, as the sort of band, that could easily become YOUR band. 
And while there's nothing nearly as chaotic and freaked out as the opener, there is most definitely no shortage of fuzz pop bliss. "Gun Shy" is rollicking and punky, but again, crazy catchy, mixing droned out guitar, furious buzz, tangled melodies, and some super heavy, almost emo sounding noiserock blowouts. "Silent Partner" almost sounds like a slightly punkier, more youthful Swervedriver, and that shoegaze vibe surface throughout, giving all of Deserve a fantastically dreamy, druggy vibe, a sound that shifts easily from hazy, fuzzy drift, to grinding punkish pound and back again, often settling somewhere right in between, and again, amidst all this noisiness and sonic chaos, all this crunch and fuzz, blast and pound, is some of the craftiest popsmithery we've heard in ages, the sort of thing, that recast, and super polished, could have the potential to be the next big thing, thankfully, these guys seem to have no interest in that at all. The poppiness of these jams more like some sonic artifact, the seemingly random result of nothing but loud guitars, sweaty, bloody basement shows, lots of booze, youthful exuberance, and just fucking rocking, it's the perfect mix of that classic nineties indie rock sound that we can't ever seem to get enough of STILL, home brewed fuzz pop, and wild, chaotic noise rock crunch, all woven into something more fresh and and raw and punk and poppy, and it's just about the best thing we've heard in forever. 

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