Published Jul 15, 2015Most folks are familiar with the California sound. Originating in the 1960s, the tremolo was heavy and evoked waves hitting the shore, the melodies as idyllic and bright-eyed as the people, who melted their days away in the rays. Keeping that style fresh and not simply rehashing Brian Carman's opening riff of the Chantays' "Pipeline" can be a challenge. But San Francisco's Jet Trash nail it.
Their six-track self-titled EP is as refreshing and satisfying as a patio pint or a quick dip on a 30-degree afternoon. Each track has tight hooks, lost-my-baby lyrics simultaneously sung and shouted out, and truly groovy bass runs. It's pure, unadorned '60s surf with a bite, absolutely shameless rock'n'roll. Think fellow Californians Thee Oh Sees or Ty Segall, but with less mess. It should be cliché (one track is simply called "California"), but somehow Jet Trash keep it new (and gnarly).
Being an artist with a throwback sound is nothing new, as artists like the Sam Cooke-channelling Leon Bridges and psychedelia revivalists Michael Rault and Jacco Gardner prove. Jet Trash can be added into that mix of musicians that hold an appreciation for the past, but offer it through a modern lens. They ooze authenticity, something that fellow surf rockers like Seattle's La Luz or Alabama's Man-or-Astroman? have only emulated. There must be something in those Pacific waters. Surf's up, mm-hm. (Wiener Records)