A trippy meditation.
The Lonesome Wilderness are a Phoenix outfit of desert psych rockers. Formed in 2011 and now ready to share their sophomore effort, Lush, the group has excitedly stepped out of their comfort zone within their typical garage rock tendencies. To be fair, we would have been pleased with simply more of the same — as this new venture in sound is a treat.
Recorded over the course of a year, Lush reflects the band’s growing interesting of expanding their sound beyond the welcomed energy of their live shows. As singer/guitarist Joe Golfen tells us:
“For our first record, we really wanted to capture the sound of us as a live band, and I think that really comes through. This time we wanted to add some studio magic to the mix, really looking to let these songs bloom as much as possible, which is why we went with the name Lush.”
Three of the songs you’ll find in the release have been in The Lonesome Wilderness’ set for years — but were refined to blend in the studio elements the outfit had always been hearing in their heads since their conception. “Karma”, “Murder in Chicago”, and “Nico” got the work-over.
Anxiety must have been running high in anticipation for the group, too, as “Karma” was recorded over a year ago, originally intended to be released as a single. But the track turned out, as the band puts it, “so good that we wanted to save it for an EP.”
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Fun fact: at the end of “Stay Out of the Sun”, you can hear Andrea Golfen laughing and sheepishly saying “Hey Tom” in the midst of recording the hand clapping.
“Alright” is a soothing and expertly-paced creation. Vocally, the arrangements are reminiscent of the best of moments from Band of Horses, but executed with such a precision and consistency by The Lonesome Wilderness that their sound is distinct and worthy of your attention.
The heaviness and intensity of “Alright” and its percussive elements highlight the group’s ceiling. Does this sound like a sophomore album — like a group searching for their identity? It does not.
The Lonesome Wilderness capitalize on their western origins, and nail what they call “the most ambitious thing the band has ever attempted.” “Alright” is an incredibly satisfying 5/5.