The clouds have parted, February’s done for, the world sprang ahead and there’s plenty of sun-soaked tunage to warm your hibernating bones. Between the welcomed heat wave and gnarly swells pumping this weekend, I’m pulling the trigger on a Spring set list in anticipation for the coming season. Open your windows, grab some flip flops, and blast your nips because things are warming up:
Two Wounded Birds - Self Titled
This album, the one and only from the UK group spearheaded by Johnny Aries, has been on repeat since the day I found it 2 weeks ago. Aries & Co. channel 50′s surf vibes, echoing reverb, energetic treble and a voice as smooth as eggs into an etherial summer soundscape I can’t resist. “To Be Young” is my definition of a perfectly written song, from start to finish you want more of everything. “My Lonesome” has a bass line and ride-symbol groove that won’t quit, while wammy-bar vibrating tunes like “Midnight Wave” and “Night Patrol” crave a green room and 5’9″ retro fish. Best album of the year so far (even tho it’s a year old).
Cody ChesnuTT - Landing On A Hundred
My amigo Chad clued me on to Cody ChesnuTT a few months back, but I’ve been grooving out to this most recent album at an unsettling rate. Tracks like “What Kind of Cool” or “Till I Met Thee” would have Mother Theresa cracking into her chastity belt like McGyver, spell bound and swooning. Aside from ChesnuTT’s soul-laced voice is a freestyling, poetic ability to narrate on current events on tracks like “Scroll Call” or the aggressive “That’s Still Mama”. What I dig the most about ChesnuTT’s new-motown stylings is his funky, swervy guitar strumming atop horns and back up vocals, bold and refreshing.
Real Estate – Self Titled
This New Jersey band has put out another incredible album, Days, since their 2009 self titled release but there’s a level of respect that this original deserves. Tracks like “Pool Swimmer” and “Lets Rock the Beach” sound like a summer fling on Malibu in 1955, full of delayed reverb and the friendly thump of single-coil picking on a Fender Mustang. The songs are easy, mellow and crammed with maritime nostalgia that begs for a long board and Katin trunks. Best of all is “Suburban Beverage”, a head-nodding ballad with only one line: “Budweiser, Sprite, do you feel alright?” Yes, yes I do.
Fool’s Gold – Leave no Trace
If you ever need a pick me up or something to blast on the way to a morning session then reach for Fool’s Gold. This California group combines the surfer tunes of the west coast with the percussion of Africa and vocals in Herbrew. Sound crazy? You’re right, it is, but crazy is responsible for incredible tracks like “The Dive” and “Tel Aviv”. The combination of vibrato vocals, shaking gourds, languages I don’t understand and the melodic guitar solos of Lewis Pesacov are tantalizing. Tittilating even. “Mammal” showcases each members abilities with fretboard-sliding licks, belting vocals, half-timing drums, and harmonizing back up vocals in glorious unison. Left-Coast stylee mixed with African beats, like driving a 70′s station wagon full of shred sticks with a Djembe strapped to the hood.