Day two of Burgerama IV provides a reliable helping of psych and surf that day one has displayed so well heretofore. In addition, Sunday’s lineup brings a much needed dash of soul and dream pop that will allow you, the well informed festival goer, to cleanse your palate before the sheer amount of shred that Thee Oh Sees, Black Lips and Ty Segall will employ to ply your bones from your soon to be useless bodies. Lest we forget, Sunday also promises the largest cut-off jean short adorned sing along to Bone Thugs n Harmony‘s “First Of The Month” which is sure to be a memory you’ll hold near and dear to your heart for years to come. Here are but a few highlights of Burgerama IV’s final hurrah.
2014 was such a strong year for a music, with its torrent of surprise releases and big name artists, that it was easy to overlook Nausea, the latest effort from Craft Spells. The amount of growth in Justin Vallesteros songwriting is immediately apparent from the record’s titular opening track. Complex melodies swirl around a new found depth of production that were only hinted at in previous releases. Lush instrumentation radiates with a comforting warmth and innocence that propels Vellesteros into a realm occupied by the likes of Wild Nothing and Toro y Moi, both bands who don’t get enough recognition for the beauty of their compositions.
In The Red
Frontman Chad Obovich is a comfortable bedfellow to the burgeoning California garage rock scene. His guitar playing has rubbed elbows with Ty Segall, Mikal Cronin, and Together Pangea but with Meatbodies Obovich is taking center stage, allowing himself to get surprisingly personal without compromising the raucous hedonistic hook soaked rock that he’s developed over the years. Their self-titled debut is confident and relentless, barreling through huge stomping distortion and hip-gyrating glam without batting a lash.
Jacco’s eclectic penchant for baroque instrumentation makes him considerably more whimsical than the majority of Burgerama’s roster. With shades of The Zombies and Donovan, Gardner’s obsession with the curious plays out in wonderful obscure melodies.
Froth’s reverb drenched surf rock is perfectly constructed with equal measures of bared teeth and wiggling hips. Their latest Patterns is a gloriously fun display of talent and they’ll live show will be just the same.
Curtis Harding must have a hell of a record collection, as his own work embodies so many heavy hitters of the 60’s and 70’s. From Thin Lizzy to Marvin Gaye, while Harding’s songs are not necessarily original, they his voice and eye for homage.
Twins Wyatt and Fletcher Shears form the uncompromising drum and bass duo The Garden whose compositions tend to pack palpable visceral tension in under two minutes. Their music intentionally defies categorization and the brothers’ only real goal is to be limitless with their creative expression and remain unfettered by genre constraints. Their songs retain a punkish fury but imbue elements of hip-hop, electronica, and high-minded eye for post-modernism, which makes more sense than it seems.
Nick Waterhouse embodies the role of bandleader like Gil Evans but swings with the soul of James Brown and Jerry Lee Lewis. With horns and backup singers to back him amongst songs of romantic woes and triflings, his pulls from blues, 70s funk and soul to make heartache a hell of a good time to dance to, at the very least.
King Khan & BBQ Show
In The Red Records
Bad News Boys is the first release from these oddballs in over 5 years but that doesn’t mean they’ve grown out of their shenanigans. King Khan is still on of the most entertaining frontmen around and his penchant for howling and showing his ass to any and everyone makes him a must see. Both him and his bandmate Mark Sultan (BBQ) reach an energy that implies they may burst a blood vessel at any moment. Who wouldn’t want to catch that?