The Graceful Slicks - EP
Owain Paciuszko 30/10/2010
Oxford quintent cite the likes of The Brain Jonestown Massacre and The Thirteenth Floor Elevators as influences and it's easy to hear why on opening track Black and Blue with its laidback lead riff, jangly acoustic guitars and muddy, psychedelicly drawled vocals. Like a lot of their contemporaries there's an easy charm to their woozy, post-rock amblings that's pretty easy to consume. Whilst Anton Newcombe and co. can sometimes producer a record that's barely listenable (see; Like Kicking Jesus) in its drug-addled retro leanings, The Graceful Slicks seem content to produce something akin to bubblegum-pop-psych-rock and whilst it'd be nice to squeeze a bit more ambition out of these initial recordings it is, at the same time, admittedly early days for this barely nine month old band.
Shows Over sounds like Buffalo Springfield meets The Beta Band and shifts into a head-nodding, toe-tapping swagger of guitars like a soundtrack to a slacker uprising. Whilst closing track Theory of the Times starts with a more ominous guitar line, cymbals tapped expectantly, and whilst you can immediately play out the rest of your song in your head, it's a reasonably entertaining ride which sounds like more recent Super Furry Animals wig-outs.
It's quite easy for modern psychedelic rock bands to fall into the trappings of their influences and the sounds of the past, because they sound good and they're fun to get lost in. Whilst it's nice to hear these intentionally trippy melodies there's still a sense, on this record, of a band finding their feet and discovering what they want to do with these sounds. They've got the vibe down right, but will be a far more rewarding listen when they can stretch beyond what's been done and done again.