Earlier this year, a friend of mine from high school (sup Raul) told me how bad I needed to check out this band.
“They’re like surf punk mixed with chiptune! It’s super sick!!”
(not really sure he said those exact words, but that was the gist I got)
Being the busy, apathetic college student that I am, I put off listening to them for several months. I kept telling myself that they were probably “just another garage band” but god dammit, Raul was persistent. The enthusiasm with which he described their music was infectious. Eventually I caved in and decided to give them a listen.
It was one of the best music-related decisions I’ve made this academic year.
I immediately agreed with everything Raul had relayed to me and became engrossed with their previous release, Saltwater. The jams were beachy, the vocals washed out and calm, and the lyrics subtly artistic and haunting. I’m still captivated by the line “Like a skeleton living in darkness, I’ll never feel warm again.” Fucking emo chills man…
My infatuation with their music was furthered along when I caught them playing a house show at the Dahd Pahd in Pomona back in December. I was supposed to be the designated driver that night but five rapid Modelos and two joints later, I was on a good one for sure (funny how quick plans can change). Unsurprisingly, their music was excellent in my less-than-sober state and despite not being the headliner that night, the band stole the show. These guys had won over another convert and I eagerly awaited their next release.
Flash fucking forward to April, bitch!
Out of nowhere, these three dudes from LA County dropped their newest work, Strawberry. They’ve certainly found a relatively unexplored niche with a sound that combines an interesting blend of surf punk, emo, and chiptune.
If my ears were to accurately attempt to describe what they hear, they would assert that it’s like if you were to take all of Joyce Manor’s best songs, throw them into a boss fight on your Game Boy, and then sprinkle on some early twenties angst and lament. Mmm delicious!
The EP furiously opens with “A Thought Loop Acquisition System.” An esoterically titled (bonus points for abstract concepts) fast-paced jam that somehow reminds me of both Aquaman and Scooby-Doo. I bet ya wanna listen now, don’t you Squidward?
Every song on the record is equally as catchy as the last. After a satisfying 27 minutes of joy, the music stops and you’re forced to either play it again or listen to something just as catchy (good luck with that).
Overall, Stawberry is a fun experience that will both pump you up at parts and mellow you out in others. As the school year winds down and the days grow longer, you’ll be glad to add this album to your Summer repertoire.
Enjoy it below!
P.S. the album is free (pay what you want) to download.
But honestly, you should support the artist and flip ’em a few bucks!