Down In Front: Sunday Night at the Drive-In

photo 1There are a few things that still exist today that are a direct link to our past; both the past we exist in and the one that existed before us. Cultural significance can be debated all you want(there are plenty of folks who love that s**t.) For me, in order for something to have cultural significance it has to pull up all those gooey emotions that make us pine for those things we so loved but can no longer see, touch, and experience again. That 10th birthday with all your friends at the pizza shop, followed by cake and ice cream at home. Then a GI Joe toy battle followed by the late night horror show. Getting your driver’s license and driving your car home, alone, for the first time. Graduation. Your first roller coaster ride. These are things we all more or less experience, though in different ways with different feelings of longing.

One item of cultural significance for me was the drive-in movie theater. Growing up in the Midwest we had two drive-ins in the town I grew up in. We had the Warsaw Drive-In and the Lincolndale. The Warsaw Drive-In was the oldest drive-in with one screen, while the Lincolndale had two screens, each showing two flicks. My parents took me to both several times growing up. I can remember seeing Superman, Food of the Gods, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Warlock, Down and Out In Beverly Hills, and countless other 80s gems at the Warsaw Drive-In. At the Lincolndale I remember one Friday night in-particular where my parents and I saw a double feature of House and Return of the Living Dead. It was pretty great. The last movie I ever saw at the drive-in before they closed here in town was the The Island of Dr. Moreau remake, so that would mean the last season for the Warsaw Drive-In was 1996. The Lincolndale closed long before that. There was another drive-in near my house back in the 70s and 80s called the WaWa Drive-In. I never went to the Wawa as it was an adult drive-in theater, showing all the latest and greatest double and triple X films of the day. I’m still floored thinking that there was a dirty movie drive-in twenty minutes from my house growing up. Oh, the 70s.

So on Sunday night the wife and I took the kids to a town about 25 miles west of us called Plymouth, Indiana. We hit the Tri Way Drive-In movie theater and saw Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Transformers: Age of Extinction. The Tri Way is one of two drive-ins that are still in decent driving distance of us. The Tri Way also has four screens so each screen has different genres. Ours was the action but not too violent films. There was one with some comedies, one for kids, and one with more suspense. This was the first time for the kids to go to a drive-in, and the first time I’d been to one since 1996. I was excited.

I have to say, I wasn’t disappointed. Neither was the wife and kids. The concession stand has improved greatly from popcorn and candy. Breaded tenderloin sandwiches, cheeseburgers, nachos, fries, bosco sticks, and of course popcorn. Also soft pretzels, candy, and ice cream. Not gonna lie, that stuff wasn’t cheap. Hell, a bottle of water was $2.50 out of the vending machine. Really? I had to tell myself you can’t put a price on the kids’ happiness. Well, actually you can. That price was $42 for the first round of food and $26 for the next round, not to mention the $39 it cost to get in. But still, what’s $107 when your kids are having so much fun, right? And I only counted 30 welts from mosquito bites, not to mention the massive muscle spasm from sitting in a folding chair for 6 hours. Then attempting to sleep in the front seat of the van while my wife and son attempt to finish that three-hour behemoth of a toy commercial called Transformers: Age of Extinction. Jesus Michael Bay, ever heard of someone called and EDITOR????….

But I’m getting off point here. It’s about nostalgia, and the kids having fun, and the wife and I reliving those fun times at the drive-in when we first started dating. But back then we didnt’ have to worry about helping the Tri Way finance the purchase of four new digital projectors priced at $75,000 a piece. Yep, $300,000 they have to spend in order to update their theater or else they close. So now I gotta feel guilty when I’m cringing at a $2.50 bottle of water, or a $5 funnel cake, or a $7 bucket of popcorn. Yeah, I’m a bastard for not wanting to spend $4 on a Pepsi. Sorry about technology and all. I didn’t invent digital media. Blame Sony…or George Lucas. Not me!

But hey, we had fun still. I’m sure we’ll go back, and I’ll bring an extra $100 in case the kids want an extra popcorn or funnel cake.

Nostalgia is an interesting thing. Until you step out of the warm, reminiscent glow of it everything “back then” seems better. Hitting a drive-in with my family was both a subtle reminder of childhood and all those warm fuzzies I had sitting in the back of my dad’s pick-up watching Beverly Hills Cop or some cheap B-horror movie as we snacked on Chicken In A Biskits, Doo-Dads(thank you Nabisco for your saturated fats-filled party kibble), and maybe an occasional bucket of oily popcorn from the concession stand. It was also a reminder of my mortality. Sitting in a lawn chair at 1:30 am on a hill watching “roid rage” versions of my favorite childhood toys violently disemboweling each other as Marky Mark YELLS LOUDLY and pretends to be a hillbilly engineer from Texas with a “Bah’stun” accent, made me realize that sometimes family fun can be had and enjoyed well before the witching hour and heads can still hit pillows at a decent hour. What can I say, I’m a curmudgeon. Hats off to my parents for taking me on several occasions to the outdoor theater. Granted, this was also before Daylight Savings Time and it was usually just me with them. By then my older brother was working, going out with his friends, and more than likely getting high. So my mom and dad had it a little easier than me. Yeah, take that nostalgia!

Kids had fun, that’s all that matters in the end. Maybe the wife and I will head back there someday. When something good is playing. Or for the triumphant return of the Wawa Drive-In. You know, to picket it or something.

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Plaxton and the Void are ‘Still Alive’

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by E.A. Poorman

In the quaint little seaside town known as Warsaw, IN there lives a band called Plaxton and the Void. You know of them? Well, you should if you don’t. They’re making some pretty epic music amongst the treasure trove of orthopedic takeovers, karaoke on Thursdays, and a church for every non-affiliated, non-denominational moderately conservative weekend warrior this side of Kosciusko county, USA. If you’re not privy, let me fill you in: Plaxton and the Void make big, cavernous indie rock that takes equal parts The Decemberists, My Morning Jacket, and a touch of A.M.-era Wilco, and serve it up with a hefty portion of Midwestern matter-of-fact grit. They released their debut full-length Ides late in 2012 as the snow fell over Pike, Center, and Winona Lake. It was a great beginning for a band hungry to write and play. After a couple years of gigs and writing they have just released the excellent follow-up to Ides, the aptly titled e.p. Still Alive. I spoke to the band about the new e.p. and how the last two years have gone.

“We began writing and arranging the new songs right as Ides was being released” says the guys in Plaxton and the Void when I ask about the process of writing and recording Still Alive. “Spring 2013 was mostly writing and learning new songs. Then we were working on the Kosciusko’s Got Talent competition. After we won that, a Stacey Page Online(a Kosciusko County online-based news source)reporter interviewed us. That guy was John Faulkner. We had been looking for a keys player and we kind of interviewed him back during that interview and found out that he had just moved here from Nashville and was a keys player and went to recording school down there. We tried him out and he was a good fit, so most of the rest of the summer and fall was teaching him the songs and getting him up to speed. We were able to integrate and write some new keys parts to all the new songs before we started recording. Back in October, Joel started a business with his old boss (the Light Rail Cafe in Winona Lake) so that has been owning him and putting a crimp on his availability for recording and playing shows. We began recording Still Alive in December. We’ve been busy with that process for the first half of the year.”

There is a definite sonic change from Ides to Still Alive. I asked the guys if they went in going for a particular sound, or if they just let things happen naturally. “We have been focusing more on quality and on perfecting arrangements. it is becoming more important with a fifth member in the band to really nail the arrangements. Joel is also maturing as a writer, even as his time is more limited… so we are getting that distilled flavor of a more powerfully concentrated spirit. We wouldn’t say the individual songs on Still Alive are leaner. There’s a lot of instrumentation, like organs and strings, that you don’t hear on Ides. We were trying to do what best served the songs. So if that meant paring down some parts to make other things more powerful, that was what we did.”

The album was recorded at Squidtown Music, which is bassist Dave McCall’s basement studio, as well as recording some drum tracks in an old chapel which gave the drums some great, massive sound. Song-wise, there seems to be some heavier themes of loss and healing. Singer, guitarist, and lyricist Joel Squiers explained further. “I think this album is a bit darker because at the time when I was writing some of the songs I was going through some major life changes and battling with whether or not I’d made the right decisions. Also I was trying to write less from personal experiences and draw from things outside of myself in the writing. Also, this winter sucked and I think a lot of people were thinking darker than they might normally.”

Now Plaxton and the Void have a great new set of songs to share, are there going to be some shows to see them at? “Now that the EP is finally wrapped up, we’re actively booking new shows. Nothing is confirmed yet, but we’ve got a few in the works. We’ll also be hosting a show of our own to launch the EP. We’re hoping to get some Fort Wayne, South Bend, and Goshen shows lined up soon (in addition to hometown Warsaw shows). All our booking info is on our Facebook page if anyone is interested in us playing at a specific event or venue.”

Speaking of playing shows, Plaxton and the Void had actually won a Battle of the Bands in their hometown of Warsaw, IN. I asked them for some details about this. “We’ve won two big contests. The first was in 2013 when we won the Kosciusko’s Got Talent contest put on by the largest online news source in our county(Kosciusko), staceypageonline.com. That one was a youtube video contest for videos under 3 minutes, so we had to rearrange (to fit within the time limit) and record a song and video for that. More recently we won the Judge’s Choice award in the Cancer Care Fund fundraiser (put on by the K21 organization). We raised a lot of money for the fund and had a lot of fun performing for the crowd and judges. That one was a live performance competition.”

Okay, so a great new 6-song EP done and ready for ears, hometown accolades and county-wide recognition for the band and their skills; both in songwriting and live performance. What’s next? ” We’re just five guys with day jobs that love writing and playing original music. We have fun doing our best and sharing that with our friends and community. We’re hoping to share that with a few more communities in 2014. But ultimately, it is up to the fans to spread the word and share our music with their friends. We live in a viral world.”

Indeed we do live in a viral world, so I’m about to cough and not cover my mouth. Check out Plaxton and the Void’s Still Alive at http://plaxtonandthevoid.bandcamp.com/. And keep up with everything Plaxton and the Void at https://www.facebook.com/plaxtonandthevoid.

 

Honeyblood :: Honeyblood

Hoenyblood-Album-CoverHave you ever wondered what the Foo Fighters might sound like if they were fronted by Neko Case? No? Well then you can be excused. For the rest of you cue up Honeyblood’s self-titled album and check out opening track “Fall Forever” and you’ll find out. It’s as if that blonde guy was kicked off the drum throne and Dave Grohl took his rightful place back behind the kit as The New Pornographers chanteuse took over mic duties. It’s a stunning sound, really. Of course “Fall Forever” isn’t the Foo Fighters or Neko Case, it’s Honeyblood and you won’t be forgetting that name anytime soon.

Stina Marie Claire’s vocals possess a power that harken back to the glory days of the late-80s and early 90s when bands like Throwing Muses, The Breeders, and Blake Babies were making their presence known in the world of dude-dominated alternative music. Besides vocal duty Stina also plays guitar with as much force and machismo as any flannel-clad dude did back in Aberdeen or Seattle. This Scottish two-piece band, which also consists of Shona McVicar on drums are making a sound that guys like Gil Norton, Butch Vig, and Steve Albini produced back when President Clinton had just been sworn in. Besides “Fall Forever”, “Super Rat” seethes as Stina sings “You are the smartest rat in the sewer,” followed by “I will hate you forever” as the song buzzes and hums like classic Pixies. “(I’d Rather Be) Anywhere But Here” starts up like Concrete Blonde covering “Lithium”, while “Bud” has a Grant Lee Buffalo vibe with more of that Neko Case vocal phrasing. This is classic early 90s alternative. Honeyblood are tapping into a musical vein that has sorely been left to shrivel and fade. That space between the over indulgence of the 80s and the anti-establishment 90s indie music; that place in alternative music where a band could still sound good without losing street cred for doing so. “Choker” “No Spare Key”, and “No Spare Key” all grind and slither with the spirit of underground rock and the vibe classic 120 Minutes. Closing track “Braidburn Valley” sounds like a big, sweeping Mazzy Star track with a hint of Straitjacket Fits. Melancholy and angry all at once.

So we may not have Neco Case fronting the Foos, and I suppose that’s just kind of weird when you think about it. But Honeyblood have given us one hell of a debut record. For those 80s and 90s kids that remember Alternative Nation, 120 Minutes, and being exiled in a place called Guyville.

7.9 out of 10

 

Music On Vinyl: Making Spins Sound Better

photo (34)So Saturday July 12th my wife and I were supposed to go to Chicago and see one of my favorite songwriters Jeff Tweedy play at the Taste of Chicago Festival. He was going to play part of the show with a small band(including his 18 year old son Spencer on drums) and the other part just him and an acoustic guitar(or several acoustic guitars as he plays many songs in many tunings.) Well on the way to South Bend to catch the train to Chi-town we decided it would be best not to go as Chicago was getting dumped on by massive rains. We figured we’d just grab lunch and walk around a mall or something. Better than being miserable and soaked in Chicago for 6 hours. Lucky for us we stayed in the Hoosier state as they cancelled both the Taste of Chicago and the concert.

So we grabbed lunch and just drove around Mishawaka and South Bend for the afternoon. Since we didn’t have any kids with us to bore we headed to Goshen, IN to check out Ignition Music. It’s an old garage that’s been converted into a record store, audio equipment sales, and concert venue. Turns out its’ a classy joint with lots of style and personality and even some decent spins. The owner still had some RSD releases left over. Two caught my eye immediately. Both were Placebo records(the Belgian jazz fusion band fronted by keyboardist Marc Moulin, not those 90s alternative rockers.) These albums were extremely limited when released on RSD by the record company Music On Vinyl.

If you’re not familiar with Music On Vinyl, their whole gig is to reissue old classic albums that deserve a second life on high quality virgin vinyl. I’d picked up the self-titled Placebo album from them a couple months ago and was floored. It sounds utterly amazing. This record company based in the Netherlands does a fantastic job with the albums they reissue. The reissues aren’t cheap, but they’re worth every penny.

Anyways, as I was saying this record shop had Placebo’s other two albums. I had no idea all three of the Placebo records were reissued. I just thought their final self-titled was reissued. I began salivating. My wife gave me her blessing to snag one of the albums so I went with 1973. I’d heard a few tracks from it on Youtube and thought I’d go with it.

There was some small talk with the owner and we pet his very friendly chocolate Lab before heading out the door. I couldn’t wait to get home and spin this funky chunk of jazz fusion. This band has quickly become one of my favorites. We got home and I proceeded to pull the record out and check it out when I looked at side 2 of the album and my jaw dropped. The adhesive that goes on the center of the record for the label to stick on had missed its mark at the pressing plant and half of the adhesive was ON THE RECORD. I couldn’t believe it. This stuff happens, sure. But this wasn’t just any record. It was a RSD release and limited to 1,000 copies worldwide. I knew this guy didn’t have another copy. So I sent him a message letting him know the situation. I didn’t want my money back, I just wanted a working record. On a whim I emailed Music On Vinyl directly telling them the situation and sent them a picture of the album. I asked them if there was any way I could get a copy from them. I just wanted to know if it was possible to even get another record, and whether I needed to go through the record shop or if they could help.

That was that.

Sunday passed and then Monday morning I get an email back from Music On Vinyl directly. A guy named Mark contacted me and said he was very sorry about the album. He said normally they’d have the customer go through the record shop, but since he knew this album was sold out he’d send me a copy he had at Music On Vinyl. Just like that MOV said they’d hook me up. Well imagine my surprise when my wife calls me today at work to tell me a package arrived in the mail for me…from the Netherlands. They overnighted the album to me from freaking Europe! They came through and then some. I’ve spun the record four times tonight. Labels lined up right and the record, as I knew it would, sounds amazing. Ignition Music’s owner got back to me yesterday and apologized about the record and that he’d give me a 100% refund. I told him I appreciated the offer. Music On Vinyl was hooking me up with a new copy and that a refund wasn’t necessary. But I did tell him I’d be back up for that Ball Of Eyes LP.

All of this blabbering for what? What’s my damn point? Well my point is that I wish more companies conducted business like Music On Vinyl. Upstanding folks that make things right when needed. Quality vinyl and great customer service over there in the Netherlands. Thanks Mark and Music On Vinyl, and thanks Ignition Music. I’ll be back.

Check Music On Vinyl out here and see what all they have coming out and what you can buy and order from your local brick and mortar from Music On Vinyl.

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United Waters :: Sunburner

United-Waters-cover-575x575United Waters’ Sunburner is the sound of a hot apartment in July. With the air conditioner on the fritz the windows are wide open in the blazing afternoon and the sound of the neighborhood seeps in like the humid belches of heat that consume you. In the distance a guy cranks his stereo and blares some unrecognizable industrial album; the kid down the hall spends a half hour plucking an out-of-tune electric guitar, while a couple blocks away you can hear city workers breaking up a sidewalk. You can barely make it out, but someone is definitely playing a drumset, out of time of course and in intermittent slaps, pats, and tats. All of these noises are alarming at first. Painful even in the heat as you try to find some semblance of solitude amidst the cacophony of aural chaos. But after awhile all of these noises begin to mesh. They blend into this pharmaceutical, hypnotic sound soup. Underneath all of the noise you hear a low, monotone voice speaking to you, soothing you. What’s it saying? You can’t tell, but that’s okay. Pretty soon the city squall becomes this muffled, warbly pop song. A score to a sticky, sun and sweat-drenched afternoon. An industrial lullaby played in the key of nothing in-particular.

I recently came across United Waters’ Sunburner and I was a bit perplexed. I wasn’t really sure what to make of it. Is it some avante garde take on noise rock? A codeine-laced, post-surgical numbed pop? I ran out of quirky, clever adjective-filled sentences to describe it. Pitchfork writer Marc Masters wrote this about Sunburner:

Yet every inch of Sunburner is muffled and drenched as if it’s wearing a sweater in 100-degree weather; at times, it resembles a Joy Division record played under a stack of mattresses.

I felt this was a great description but not one that would entice me to seek out United Waters’ Sunburner at any point in the near future. I listened as opening track “Blue Weaver” played and to my ears it sounded like some beat up, warped tape copy of a lost Morphine song. With its simple guitar riff and what sounds like a distant kick drum playing, followed by singer Brian Sullivan’s moan/vocal it all sounded fairly common. Then this warped, mutant noise comes up from the depths and turns the song into something else. Darker and more sinister. “Turn On Your Century” beats and booms along like a band playing some nondescript song in a room three doors down. “Sunburner” indeed sounds like the echoes of Joy Division running through their set list in a grimy Manchester garage as Leonard Cohen reads lyrics into a third rate microphone. “Our Beat” sounds like The Motels playing in an ether haze.

The whole albums chugs along song after song with a disjointed rhythm and a rusty, industrial darkness. Like something that would be playing in the background of a David Lynch film, or a black and white German expressionistic short film. You start out thinking why you’re listening to this noise, but by the end you’re hitting play again. And again. It’s a hypnotic listening experience. You won’t be putting this album on to entertain the family or for a party jam. But much like Body/Head’s Coming Apart, it’s a visceral listening experience that affects you. You may even find a place to curl up and hide inside it for a bit. That’s not a bad thing.

7.9 out of 10

 

 

Strand of Oaks: Let The Healing Begin

strand-of-oaks-healI’m not sure what more I can add to the Greek chorus of praise Strand of Oaks’ has been receiving regarding their new album HEAL. In fact, I might make things worse throwing in my two cents. But hey, that’s what I do.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Strand of Oaks before I heard the blazing track “Goshen ’97″. It’s not that I didn’t like Tim Showalter’s music. Not at all. It’s just that it’s hard for me to really fall for singer/songwriter stuff that is mainly a guy or gal and an acoustic guitar. I get so distracted listening to the simplicity. I always find myself wishing there was some piano, or an interesting drum part thrown in. Analog synth hovering above the mix? Yes please. But still, I had a friend tell me I should check out Strand of Oaks; in particular the album Pope Killdragon. I did listen to it and I quite liked it. But something happened(I walked away from my computer; I slept; I drank one too many Old Styles;) and I’d forgotten about Timothy Showalter’s Strand of Oaks.

One thing, however, had stayed with me during that one listen; and that was that Tim Showalter was from Goshen, IN. That’s only about 25 miles north of my stomping grounds. I was born at Goshen Hospital. I used to go to the Concord Mall when I was a teenager and buy cassettes at Super Sounds. We’d occasionally chow down at MCL Cafeteria. I used to go to Ox Bow Park with my grandparents on Sundays for picnic lunches. I knew this place very well and this guy I was listening to online grew up there. There was this weird Midwest/Michiana connection. Well fast forward to a couple months ago when I heard “Goshen ’97″ online and was blown away. Holy shit, that sounds like J. Mascis shredding over my new favorite summer jam! Then you listen to the lyrics and it’s this guy talking about growing up f’d up and loving music. It’s an anthem for the disgruntled and disenfranchised youth of America. “Singing Pumpkins in the mirror/porn and menthols under my bed”, “I was lonely, but I was having fun” he sings triumphantly before pleading in the chorus “I don’t wanna start all over again.” It wasn’t just a song about misspent youth, listening to 90s alternative music, smoking, and getting f’d up. It was a song about the adult version of that Midwest kid looking back with nostalgia because he’s emotionally in a place where anything is better than where’ he’s at. This song was the most honest, sadsack anthem I’d ever heard.

I immediately preordered Strand of Oaks HEAL(it was preordained by the Gods.) To my surprise “Goshen ’97″ wasn’t a fluke. Every song is this massive load of emotional vitriol; a guy consumed by his wrongs and wrongs done to him but not inclined to be destroyed by them. In my eyes the very essence of great art is the ability of the artist to take the shit life serves up on a lousy platter and turn it into something beautiful. Jarring sometimes, but beautiful nonetheless. Tim Showalter has done that with HEAL. The rocker that opens this album is followed up by some heavy synth-filled songs that make me think of one of my other favorite albums of the year, The War on Drugs’ Lost In The Dream. Big, overblown electronic drums blare through the speakers as Juno synths pulsate clearing the way for Showalter to open his chest and bleed. “HEAL”, “Same Emotions”, and “Shut In”, well pretty much all of side A pulsate like a mix of New Order, Depeche Mode, and The Sisters of Mercy all the while baring his soul, regardless of how painful it may be. “JM” is an ode to Jason Molina of Songs: Ohia and The Magnola Electric Co. Molina is an artist I never particularly got into, although I know he was a favorite of many, including Showalter. His song channels Neil Young and Crazy Horse in the overblown, fuzzed-out guitar and even channels a bit of Molina’s own “Farewell Transmission”. It’s a fitting tribute and a hell of a damn song. “Plymouth” also brings Adam Granduciel’s The War on Drugs to mind, but with Showalter’s knack for nuanced storytelling. “Mirage Year”, well, it’s a gut-wrenching personal account of Showalter’s personal struggles. Much has been said of Tim Showalter and his wife and the struggles they’ve gone through. Where one artist may have been rather ugly in recounting the painful transgressions of a hurting relationship, Strand of Oaks is brutally honest but never ugly. Singing like the song’s a therapy session with the universe. Never hurtful, just hurt. I’m sure he’s still hurt and will hurt for a long time.

I don’t know. This is a lot of what many have written about HEAL, but I felt I wanted to say my peace. This is an exquisite record. A truly honest, rocking, and emotional rock and roll record. You need to hear it. Now.

And Tim, if you ever visit your old stomping grounds, maybe we could go digging for vinyl at Ignition Music, drink a 12 pack, and go shoot some pool up in Elkhart. Just throwing it out there.

 

 

White Fence :: For The Recently Found Innocent

140428-White-Fence-Ty-Segall-New-AlbumI’ll start off by saying I’m not the diehard fan of this garage rock revival that so many others are. I recognize the greatness guys like Ty Segall, John Dwyer, and White Fence’s Tim Presley possess. Their musical output is quite staggering, and to the newbie it can be rather intimidating. Much like someone walking into the Guided By Voices vault and wondering where to start, these guys tend to put out two or three albums a year making finding a proper jumping off point rather difficult. Tim Presley seems to be the less prolific(though four albums as White Fence since 2010, as well as a collab record with Segall called Hair is nothing to stick your nose up at.) For The Recently Found Innocent is his first release since 2012s Family Perfume Vol. 2 and last year’s leftovers-turned-full-on-album Cyclops Reap. It’s a tight 40 minutes of paisley-tinted psych, late-60s British invasion pop, and good old rock n’ roll.

“The Recently Found” opens up the album strangely, with noises and echoing in the background before “Anger! Who Keeps You Under?” comes rolling in like splash of mid-60s Stones. Presley seems to have a more madcap lean to his work. Something like a less freaked out Syd Barrett, or a more in-the-clouds version of Ray Davies. The Kinks are mined quite frequently on this album and that’s a good thing. “Like That” is a bouncy track that would’ve been comfortable sitting along side “David Watts” or “Harry Rag”. Sonically the song has the sound of an old basement jam session; dehumidifier humming in the background as a lava lamp glows in the distance and light from the afternoon barely makes its way through the dingy basement window. “Sandra(When The Earth Dies)” sounds like a Donovan b-side, with a hint of Jim Noir’s Tower Of Love thrown in for good measure. “Wolf Gets Red Faced” has a sound that brings to mind early Kinks singles with the breezy California jangle of The Byrds, then “Goodbye Law” comes out from nowhere and knocks it out of the park. Leaving the echo box in another room it’s a sparse acoustic-strummed track that doesn’t sound distant but close and personal. “Arrow Man” is a hell of a rock n’ roll song that owes more to The Stranglers than the British Invasion. “Hard Water” has more of that sleepy acoustic vibe, much like buddy(and Found Innocent’s producer) Ty Segall’s 2013 album Sleeper with some great slide guitar and pedal steel to give it breezy late-60s California vibe. “Afraid Of What It’s Worth” sounds more early 80s Liverpool than mid-60s Liverpool, owing more to Echo and the Bunnymen than any mop tops.

Throughout For The Recently Found Innocent Tim Presley makes great psych and garage-tinted pop and rock. He hits all the staples; The Kinks, The Stones, The Beatles, plus some other surprises. This is White Fence’s most straightforward rock album and accessible record to date.

Plenty of reverb? Check. Fuzzy riffs? Check. Psychedelic imagery? Check. Breezy, stoned pop? Check. Drop the needle and enjoy.

7.6 out of 10