Just recently I was thinking about “The Dukes of the Stratosphear”, the psychedelic side project of Andy Partridge and Co. (a.k.a. XTC) and I was thinking about them because I thought that I have not heard anything like that in the past 10 years.
And then I got the most-recent-mp3-web-freely-distributed EP (conveniently titled “EP”) of a band that goes by the name of ARMS.
It is not like they sound exactly the same as The Dukes, but there is definetely a reminiscence of space sounds, guitars with tons of reverb-tremolo-delay and a voice that just wants to sing along with some kind of melancholic mood.
Their “EP” is composed by five songs: ‘Floaters’, ‘Heat & Hot Water’, ‘High Heels’, ‘Emilie Sue Pt.2’ and ‘Homelife’, all of them with a very well baked-in recording sound ‘Emilie Sue Pt. 2’ is thus far my favorite, probably because of the catchy guitar riff, space keybooards and (yes!) the XTC-esque overall sound.
The other tune that has catched my attention more strongly is the soul crushing, arpegio based ‘High Heels’, which is one of those songs that just digs into your mind like a 3 minute deja-vu, and makes you think about places you might swear you have visited before, and yet, you don’t know where theye are (maybe in Brooklyn, which is where these guys are from)
I’m not in love (yet) with the rest of the songs, but it is certaintly delightful to find bands like these from time to time. I’m so so sick of the dance-bit-kick-drum-bass-club-vocals of so many of today’s bands already. And how do you like Tlacael Esparza for the name of the drummer? Because that is probably the coolest drummer name I have ever heard!
Let’s wait and see what their full lenght debut album ‘Summer Skills’ sounds like when it becomes available later during the year. If it is at least as good or even (slightly) better than what these first 5 songs sound like, then, I guess we might be joining all of their social networks some time soon.
Rodans Rating: 7/10
You can get Arms’ EP from this link.
Wonder what “The Dukes of Stratosphear” sounds like? Spotify it.
About the author: Homo Rodans dreams of UFOs and how his mighty pedalboard is actually the only thing on Earth that will stop them. Keep using the Flanger PitchShifter!