Monday, April 23, 2012

Reconsidering that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup phenomenon

I really like both White Fence and Ty Segall, but was a bit less enamored of their collaboration. My review ran today at Dusted:

Ty Segall and White Fence
Drag City

Ty Segall and Tim Presley’s White Fence work slightly different parts of the 1960s psych-pop spectrum. Segall is, in general, louder, more distorted, more rhythmic, allowing punk urgency to occasionally push through lackadaisical tambourine-laced jams, injecting rockabilly jitters into slacker guitar-strummed grooves. Presley hews a little more closely to Eastern-tinged psych traditions, invoking George Harrison in the way his bending, half-stepping guitar riffs turn sitar-ish and surrounding liminal melodies with clouds of haze and drone.

Still, Segall and Presley have a lot in common, not just membership in a certain lo-fi, California-centered garage pop club, but in the way they get at the music. Both work quickly and without much second guessing, cloaking bright, loosely structured nuggets of psychedelia in the fuzz and rush of garage rock. Both communicate with immediacy, rather than polish, leaving loose ends hanging and rough undersides showing. And both have a knack of hiding sticky hooks in the mush and drone, so that you come away from their albums with actual songs in your head, not a vague sensation of having heard music.


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