The label "psychedelic" is applied somewhat liberally these days, and I must confess that some of the applications can best be characterized as generous, to be, well, generous. However, Nashville's The Sufis are squarely in kaleidoscope-colored fields under paisley clouds. The comparisons to The Beatles, The Soft Boys and Syd Barrett that their new sophomore LP Inventions will invoke are as accurate as they are obvious. And it is very, very good pop music.
The winning combination on offer here is adept songwriting -- concise (under three minutes) psychedelic pop songs that vary between languid. summery, poppy and urgent -- and inch perfect performances. The vocals are good and match the genre well. Admittedly, there is noting new about gently twisted tales accompanied by trippy vocals, 12 string guitars and some less common percussion. But for me, the familiarity of the approach is a large part of the charm when, and this is key, it is done well. Frankly, the only frustration in evaluating this record for the blog is that it is difficult to choose tracks. They are all good, all have their unique touches. I've chosen "Alone" as the representative of the more relaxed songs, and "No Expression" as an example of the energetic, rocking approach. And between them I've include the "Most Peculiar Happening Cat", which may have you wondering if Ray Davies is guesting on the album.
If you like psychedelic music, The Sufis may be your new favorite band.
The core of The Sufis are Calvin Laporte and Evan Smith.
Inventions was released on August 6 by Ample Play Records and Burger Records.
Ample Play Records