As we’ve seen before, there is currently no shortage of great music coming out of Chicago. After Twin Peaks released my favorite album of 2013 I’ve continued searching out what else the city has to offer and as such I just happened upon this newest release by Ne-hi.
In a nutshell their sound is pretty close to that of Beach Fossils’ first EP with hints of surf-rock, a shading of reverb soaked guitars, and a touch of lower-fi production. Ne-hi’s songs tend toward the more hook-laden end of the spectrum, pushing pretty close to anthem status with some of their more exuberant songs like “Turncoat.” The vibe of a live performance is captured particularly well on that track, brought out by the production.
Every song is filled with the kind of sunny melodies that make a good summertime mix-tape. And with that sunny, reverb-soaked-ness comes the suggestion of the West Coast sound of the early 60s with their carefree vocal harmonies and jangling guitars. Some moments seem to come straight out of the San Francisco pop song writing guide, while others are more related to the experimental East Coast scene. Strains of Real Estate make their appearance throughout some of Ne-hi’s more downtempo material.
Closing song, “Sun Bleed,” takes a beautifully unexpected turn at the end, leaning way back into the groove and tacking onto it a coda of soaring vocals awash in crash cymbals and high harmonies.
The album is available as a 12″ LP from Manic Static right now, as well as through Bandcamp as a download. After listening to the entire thing above (highly recommended) you can check out the video for album opener “Since I’ve Been Thinking,” also above.