I’m fickle, so I am not sure how long this will last, but right now Silversun Pickups is my favorite new band. An LA quartet touted as leading the "early 90s revival movement," their first release was the 7-song EP Pikul (Amazon, iTunes) last summer. Their first album, Carnavas (Amazon, iTunes) hit the stores two weeks ago.
Silversun Pickups came to my attention in May when "Kissing Families" was the KEXP Song of the Day. Seattle’s KEXP followed that with "Comeback Kid," also from Pikul and then "Lazy Eye," the first single from Carnavas. Maybe it is because it reminds me of a more emotional and noisier version of "Song Beneath the Song" but "Lazy Eye" has been stuck in my head ever since.
Silversun Pickups’ sound is fuzzy and guitar driven with androgynous and occasionally emotional vocals that recall the Smashing Pumpkins. Veruca Salt fans will also think the Pickups’ music familiar, but to me their song structure is a bit like the Jesus and Mary Chain if they had taken Prozac: melodic, driven and beautifully distorted.
Pikul is the quieter of the two releases, and its last hidden track may be its best. Carnavas is perfectly sequenced album and it rocks a bit harder. For a taste of Silversun Pickups live, check out these recordings from the SXSW festival. And, to see them in concert, swing by popscene at the end of August. They are playing a $10 show August 31.
Bonus link 1: Another new band I really like: Muse – Supermassive Black Hole
Bonus link 2: The above-mentioned Maria Taylor – Song Beneath the Song
popscene: 330 Ritch Street, San Francisco, CA