I always have some kind of tiny space set aside in my garage punk heart for really optimistic and sincere synth pop. The shiny stuff, made by hopeful maniacs who spend time absorbing the latest technology with a nerdy enthusiasm I can relate to. A few examples of singles that still sneak up on me are from The Lovekevins, Lo-Fi-Fnk or Bearsuit to name a few. Interestingly not one in that list from the US ...then I listened to this single from Suburban Living, the solo project of Wesley Bunch out of Virginia Beach, VA which took me to that same place.
Wesley layers in epic blown out keys on A-Side’s "Always Eyes" with chiming synths and chorus drenched guitars. How he developed this huge sounding shimmery production is a home-recorded mystery, it keeps a pristine, clear sound while being solidly dense. It’s a revised New Order sound that seems to embrace dance super pop with a gated percussion, which is probably a machine track. Hugely echo'd vocals give this an energetic Drums meets DIIV sound. When he reveals this chorus it suddenly expands to further heights where the vocal follows that synth line completely free of cynicism. Exacting sheer joy out of that melancholy Cure guitar sound while getting away with sounding like he could continue to add wave after wave of additional details and trim forever coming out on the other side a masterfully crafted epic song that doesn't get theatrical and still remains an honest, personal confession.
"Video Love" on the B-Side opens with another example of his pitch perfect dance shoegaze sound, his percussion track rises in to meet the tropical wanderings of this guitar working on minute details and settling into a mellow groove, the sun glaring off the water. That A-Side raised the tempo to such an elevation that made walking to work Monday almost nice, is this the ‘going home on a Friday night alone’ side? Lots of effects on these vocals again turn the track into a fuzzy dream confirming that we’ve caught him on the bottom of a downswing with the lyric “I know it’s hard when your alone” Huge guitars soar in between verses with his heavily layered style, but really drawing on the new wave electronic sound of the early '90s, a reinterpretation of that feel. Unhindered by technology you get songwriters like this who can create highly produced and labored over tracks that remain spontaneous. A great single introducing a new take on high tempo shoegaze.
They are headed to NYC playing Piano's Aug 29th.
Get this on Dialog Records who says:
Led by Norfolk, Virginia resident, Wesley Bunch, Suburban Living continues to craft sparking pop gems, ripe for Spring and Summer playlists, with the Always Eyes 7" out today via Dialog Records. Drenched in reverb and infectious guitar riffs, the Always Eyes 7" is logical follow-up to last summer's, Cooper's Dream EP, with plenty of airy shoe gaze synths and 80s inspired new wave sheen. "Video Love" showcases Bunch's Brit-pop sensibilities with a Morrissey inspired lyricism, while the lead single, "Always Eyes" is a jangley rhythm-heavy number. The Always Eyes 7" is available on digital and vinyl formats here.