Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Uh Bones on Randy Records
There's a few strains of garage rock; there's a hyped up punk garage crash, exploding with energy, blowing up as fast as possible and there's a crazy surf garage mutation lit by tiki torches while Dracula drives one of those hot rods and then there's a laid back, not trying to hard, with a sense of humor almost stoner garage. Chicago's Uh Bones seem to fit into that last one not taking anything too seriously except the perfect delivery of no-fi hazy jams.
A-Side's "Only You" is a stomping ramshackle country shitkicker with distorted vocals at a standard drunken garage tempo in a particularly jumping groove. It suddenly gets a lot more dense with drum fills blasting through this organ in a real scuzzy Ty Segall scratchy blues. The jangly treble sends massive chunks flying when the rest of the band gets behind that energy from Luke. These guys hang out with Matthew Melton, they've really seen some shit, they aren't just playing the part. I like this harmlnica solo, it's taking me back to those rowdy days of early Rolling Stones when they might as well have been real greasy creeps, and why it made sense for them to pull ahead of the Beatles and holding hands.
"He's got it" tones down the treble electric with some warmth while jacking up the echo and pulling back distortion. Luke is quietly delivering this junkyard melody with a slower backbeat and humming bass line. These guys put together southern comfort and smooth Zombies style psych pop. Just a trio in the basement recording to thick magnetic tape. It's crackling and peaking out in the higher ranges on that razors edge of blowing it through the red. They don't seem overly trying to impress, slowing down so the organ solo can cruise through like a slow motion muscle car pulling into the school parking lot. A real Natural Child vibe here, they might smoke a little less crack, but are equally mellow and directionless. They go with whatever happens to come out of those speakers, throwback sounds in the way Hot Lunch was capturing that specific place and time better than the people that were there.
B-Side's "A Mess" is slow enough to hear every string and they have that thick rhythm section down throwing tambourine in this time. A Silver Shampoo biker soundtrack grooving along with the best singing distortion taking real time to draw this out appropriately. The bass runs scales through the chorus staying pretty laid back, even with backup singers and high harmonies. Sharp bubbly effects on the solo drawing on West Coast psych on this one as well. I can't even think of contemporaries that are working this closely in damn near perfection. Look at the greats, Useless Eaters , Jeff Novak, Ty, Mikal, Jacuzzi Boys, Wounded Lion - it's all here with a dash of Tim Cohen thrown in.
"Bait" takes a single note melody and Farfisa organ in a new pop direction. Luke has a tight spring reverb as this rides down a midnight highway again. Everything is blurry and black and white with a '60s freakout feel but mostly they want to get these harmonies going. These guys must have an encyclopedic knowledge of the genre like The Marble Vanity to perfectly nail this sound. I love that this messed up homemade hissy reverb sound keeps sticking around being relevant thanks to bands like this.
Get it from Randy Records, they're focused on this sound like Infinity Cat.