Review Summary: Can you hear the waves crashing?
The term "summer songs" is a label that I feel can apply to a broad range of music out there. You have many people who will jam the latest dance pop song that's probably going to make a ton of money and be played in clubs all around the world. Some can listen to folk and country music and feel that summer has truly arrived. I, on the other hand, can listen to an indie rock album with twangy guitars and harmonized vocals, and think I'm on a beach listening to a local act play their latest set, and feel more bliss than when listening to the other two categories combined.
Maybe it's because this band is one of many that sets their sights on past sounds for inspiration, and then reworks it to have a modern coat of paint. Not saying there's anything wrong with that. It's just a fact of the matter that this band's sound comes from influences of 70's surf rock, 90's indie music, and a little bit of soft rock, so obviously it's all a matter of whether or not those styles appeal to you if you're debating listening to this band.
The leanings into surf rock being the heaviest of the bunch, I have to infer that this genre choice is due to the band wanting to pay respects to a monumental genre that's integral to the surf culture of California, where the band hails from. The band seems as though they don't want to just be, "another surf rock band," instead wanting to play it their own way.
Sure, this album can feel a little derivative at times, and the band's not always on it's A-game when it comes to doing something fresh and exciting with the styles of music it draws so heavily from, but, at the same time, when it pulls so much from those very same sounds, relief and euphoria is all that one can feel. Songs such as Headfone, Part 2, Whatever, Proper Day, and others on here elicit this state of mind where I can daydream sandy beaches and blue waters into reality, this album being the background music for such a wondrous destination. I guess it also helps that these songs are infectious and singable as well.
Though there are many beach songs on here, with titles such as Bummer Summerrr and Surf's Down, it's not the album's one and only focus. I can bet something else you can reminisce about while listening to the song Boring Now is a time where everything in life was simpler and more carefree. A time where the world wasn't as confusing or menacing. A time where life could truly be an adventure waiting to happen.
This album's not perfect, in fact there are a few songs I think are merely OK, such as Walk Away, and I'm Alright, but even at the end of their run times I'm not really feeling disappointed or upset. I still get inklings of the very same soft rock and 90's music that I grew up on, just not enough to suck me in as much as some of the other songs on offer here.
At the end of the day, this is an album made to pay tribute to the past, and it perfectly fulfills it's goal and then some, with fantastic additions to these genres. Talkie has done these genres proud, as they have crafted a record that pays homage to these monolithic phases of rock music, and yet simultaneously makes them their own.
Summer time's here folks. Let's enjoy it while it lasts.