Menace Beach are back with a sophomore record that, like their 2015 debut, channels distorted ’90s alt rock and sloppy ’60s garage sounds. While their aloof coolness remain, the sounds on this outing have less pop hooks (“Darlatoid” and “Suck it Out” notwithstanding ) and move along at a faster, more raw pace than previous efforts.
What gives this record a new dimension to the band is the more liberal use of singer Liza Violet’s ethereal vocals. Her more prominent role on this record brings an almost shoegaze component recalling the vocal stylings of Cocteau Twins’ Elizabeth Fraser. See “Owl” as perhaps the best example.
Opening track “Give Blood” kicks off with the confident swagger of Ryan Needham. This fuzzy track gives off attitude which never sounds like it’s trying too hard. The title track is a good demonstration of the droning ’60s keyboard used throughout the record, bringing an old sound into a modern setting.
“Can’t Get a Haircut” and “Sentimental” are prime examples of what people who seek out this genre of music want. Distorted vocal narrative and crunchy, simple guitar sounds abound. The nod to grunge will bring later year Genration Xers back to their twenties.
Menace Beach – Lemon Memory/10 Tracks/Memphis Industries