A quick hit for the the Chaw, a Concord, CA-based psych band responsible for a delicious little morsel that came my way earlier this week. Their new EP is dark and you know what I’m gonna be frank here it’s honestly some pretty bonerrific music, plenty well-suited to trysting and heavy make-outs. It’s true. What’s more, listening to the Chaw has made me re-realize how much damn fun that uniquely sexy dark strain of late-aughts psychedelia is,* and how I need to listen to approximately 900% more of it stat. This stuff is made for charged hip-shaking and is practically begging to be paired with a really badass party populated by people cooler than me.
So: The music is fun. Highlights include “The Road,” which is deliberate and menacing and nocturnal and is bound to get someone pregnant one of these days, and “Horizon,” a magesterial, surf-tinged ballad characterized by all sorts of tasty crescendo and catharsis. The EP sounds absolutely great, too. Everything is appropriate huge and hazy and smudged. Guitars brightly chime and blearily soar, leaving brilliantly arcing psychedelic chemtrails in their wake. The vocals have an affected, brash confidence about them, situated in that commanding, sexualized space occupied by Elvis, Nick Cave, and Chris Isaak. It’s well-suited to this kind of dissipated, sultry psych.
In the spirit of forthrightness begun by my use of the adjective “bonerrific,” I’m gonna say that the Chaw sounds pretty cocky on this EP, and I’m usually—usually—more the introspective type. But you know what? They have every right to sound that way. Because that cockiness, that swagger, makes this EP a goddamn blast. I can imagine it kicking all kinds of ass live. (Yo, Black Angels, put these fools in Austin Psych Fest pronto!) Here’s the Chaw’s Bandcamp and website. Get some. No, really, get some.
*I’m talking about the Black Angels, Black Mountain, the Warlocks, Sleepy Sun, et al.