Hype’s a weird thing. You’ll get a barrage of bands every year, all of them picked up by blogs and Hypem, then offered as sacrificial lambs to the revered websites, waiting for an anointment. Many are elevated to God like status, just to have their clay feet discovered in the next album (yup, the sophomore slump) or just be abandoned by Fairweather Johnsons who just wanted to fit in but couldn’t name a track besides the single.
Sometimes, you get one that seems it has staying power. A band that has the sound and the chops to rock out. Enter Pins, who are in everyone’s good books right now and their rocking album, Girls like us, and you can feel that this one will have longer legs.
Rock hasn’t been reinvented but it has been clearly studied, vivisected and cloned, with a few special augmentations. From the delicious vol-au-vent ‘It’s on’ ’til the psychedelic landscape that is ‘The Darkest Days’, Pins rely in a reverberated atmosphere to engage you. There’s a bit of garage and surf too, for those inclined for the higher range of the squealing guitar spectrum.
Need music for a night drive through the desert? ‘Mad for you’ can guide you through the long stretches where there’s nothing but a pale blue moon, Joshua trees and tumbleweeds, a place where the speed limit is just a blur to your eyes. ‘Get with me’ might have a very light surf feel, but believe you me, it’s gorgeous pop psychedelia for the discerning music fan. The solo is playful, very air guitar worthy.
Not all is fast paced. ‘I want it all’ smoulders, but never shies away from cranking up the distortion for short bursts. ‘To you’ is the closest you’ll get to a ballad and even that one goes for a lo-fi, desert rock approach. ‘Velvet Morning’ might confuse a few, as the unnerving stylings of psychedelia are more apparent in this drone-heavy track. It’ll probably get tagged as the weaker track by many a new fan. ‘Stay true’, however, could balance out any misgivings you could have with ‘Velvet Morning’, as it builds from the atmospheric notes lingering and builds up to a very catchy ending.
2013 seems to be the year of psychedelic bands ( see top albums by Hookworms, Psychic Ills) and Pins could surf this wave for a while. Girls like us is a great calling card.
Words: Sam J. Valdés López