Monday, June 20, 2011

The Young Sinclairs - we spoke our minds EP on Planting Seeds Records

There are a lot of bands recently on my radar exploring this '60s psyche sound taking it to new conclusions, or combining it with today's instrument sensibilities and then there are the bands that are the audio equivalent of civil war re-enactors. Not that The Young Sinclairs dress up or anything, but they take reproducing their sound very seriously. You can hear right away the painstaking attention to detail in this Byrds or Kinks era homage. It's uncanny, it may as well be a reissue from a psyche label version of Last Laugh...or is that Fruits De Mer Records?
It's not a Captured tracks release taking those musical ideas and moving forward. The Young Sinclairs are standing perfectly still, having studied this echo sound and then captured it completely, down the accurate mix levels of all the instruments. The sitar flavored guitar, double layered, high frequency eq'd vocal that sounds just the smallest bit like it's coming from a tin can.

The cover washed out field photo could have gone in that lonely acoustic direction, but it also applies to the abstract maybe substance altering perception of that '60s past. The Young Sinclairs are making a hell of a go of making those sounds unmistakably from the time. I almost want to play some kind of 7" gameshow where you could play something contemporary like this against an obscure '60s album and see if the contestants could tell the difference.

But even within this throwback genre these tracks stay catchy without being overly bubblegum or about holding's firmly rooted in those early psyche experimentation from 64-68, combining those pop songwriting elements with a more sinister, altered state side and adding more extreme reverb or echo effects. But here I am talking about this single like it's a part of that era... I honestly keep forgetting.

For a track like A-Side's "We Spoke our Minds" there's a groove bassline and delicate drum section, those two areas stay rock steady with subtle shifts while the electric takes liberties with that melody. The vocals have a tight plate fluctuates between a tiny room and no effects at all. I'm getting a California Dreamin' feel from these and the Fresh & Onlys of course, they inevitably come up with any recent band that's close to this sound.
"Have a Home" has a softer harmony section and a more modern vocal phrasing then I think they would have tried back in the day. They've really captured that warm electric strum sound of the era, it's a more intimate space then the other distanced efforts on this one, and they just might have some updates up their sleeves once they get this exact reproduction out of their system. It's subtle.

"You can have her" goes back to the symbolic '60s elements; the tambourine, the acoustic. I can't get over this production, they nail this sound....I'm no expert but the memories of what tiny amount of experience I've had with this sound is all here. It doesn't matter if it actually was anymore. What I imagine all music from my parents generation has to authentically be here. The guitar solo and a heavy gain boosted amp sound, the strings almost cutting out. That little gem of an imperfect performance is what gives this track it's Cinnamon Girl. That Neil Young solo is the most amazing one note experimental playing I've ever heard.

I like these guys a lot, but I worry someone found these 4 tracks on an old reel to reel at a garage sale and this band doesn't even exist. Someone see them live and say it 'aint so.

I can't help but think also the label really missed an opportunity here with that fancy paper that has seeds pressed into it you can bury in the ground and it will grow. Unless they did that previously...or it's a stupid idea, who wants to bury the 7" sleeve?

Get this single from The Young Sinclairs from the Planting Seeds Records store.

Roanoke, VA's The Young Sinclairs mark their debut release via Planting Seeds Records with the fabulous "We Spoke Our Minds E.P." (PSREC-065) Released worldwide July 20, 2010 on limited edition 33 1/3 RPM 7" Vinyl and Digital Download - the digital download version will include two bonus tracks . The Young Sinclairs have been bringing their brand of jangly 60's inspired psyche/folk/rock (RIYL: The Byrds, The Essex Green, Rain Parade etc.) to the world since 2005 as part of the Magic Twig Community. The band features: John Thompson, Daniel Cundiff, Sean Poff, Jonathan Woods, and Samuel Lunsford. In their five years they have self released several full length LPs and EPs. Along with their new "We Spoke Our Minds E.P." the band released the 18-song Vinyl only LP "Songs Of The Young Sinclairs" via Athens, GA's Kindercore Records. They have also toured with fellow PSR artists The Lovetones. They are gearing up to support both releases with their much anticipated summer tour with THE BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE.

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