Review Summary: The sound of summer
While scouring the blogs, lists, forums, and databases in our subterranean habitats, computer gazed and glossy eyed till the wee hours of the night, often we seek aural satisfaction in the music of the seasons. Whether it comes from mood, nostalgia, or simply what's outside our windows, pin pointing the sounds of spring, summer, fall, and winter can be one of the best ways to experience music. On an atmospheric level it can evoke rich imagery and sensory details of nature's many wonders; the lush, flower tangled prairies of spring, the dampened earth toned debris of fall, and the crystalline blanket of winter's ethereal chill. Impressions of sound we can all relate to.
Athens, Georgia's John Jagos knows this idea well, as everything from his moniker to his cover art suggests the sounds of summer's cauldron. Even bolder of an impression is the five songs that make up his debut EP. Immediately we're introduced to slow motion waves gliding across a watery horizon on the opener 'Breakers (Awakening)', with splashes of vocal ambience greeting a thick rising sun beyond it. Early morning dew and chlorine dreams ascend from the coastal groove of 'Collapsed Lung', as a gorgeous guitar line bathes the sea in a whisper of cyan surf, before drifting waves reveal the synths of a psychedelic game show. The tropical ballad 'Sarah' shimmers in similarly engrossing guitar work, with a certain strobe lit tenderness that brings to mind hazy memories of high school dances.
A cascade of lulling daydream tranquility pours from the corals of 'We'll Be Free', streaming a set of jangly seagull strung chords that gently ripple against Jagos’ misty vocals. The tide finally drifts to a calm impression of the cool breeze above on the closer 'Goodbye For Now', as the glow of the moon reduces the song to one last ethereal wave of sparklingly guitars and mesmerized vocals. Throughout the EP, Jagos’ airy vocals can be traced to the likes of Brian Wilson's sun soaked harmonies and M83's atmospheric take of 80s synth pop, and fusing both into five ultra-sleek, and all around gorgeous pop tunes. If the music here is indeed Seafoam's own translation of the sounds of summer, he's succeed on all fronts; creating a cohesive, memorable, and utterly hypnotizing document of the memories we leave behind during those few beloved months.