Now, Pond may well just be the latest in a long line of bands to convince me that psychedelic drugs for breakfast is the ultimate lifestyle choice, but that shouldn’t stop you from revelling in the trippy rock & roll that makes up their fantastically titled fourth effort Beard, Wives, Denim. Hailing from Perth, Oz, and consisting of members from Tame Impala, it goes without saying that fans of that band’s excellent Innerspeaker will find much to fall in love and lose your mind with.
I’m not the biggest fan of pigeon-holing bands and their tunes, and it’s a dangerous game to play when you start bandying about the terms “prog” and “psychedelic” – personally I always get that tiny bit of sick rattle through my throat whenever someone mentions Genesis or Yes – yet you can’t really get away with writing about Pond without using the P word. But wait! This is the new psychedelic. It’s fun, it’s dirty, and it’s cool as fuck.
Opener ‘Fantastic Explosions of Time’ is an uptempo mind meddler with something of early British psych-rock about it, while second track ‘When It Explodes’ melts into a beautifully baked breakdown courtesy of some seriously flanged guitars. ‘Elegant Design’ is probably the song MGMT are going out of their minds to write at the moment, caked as it is in Andrew Vanwyngarden vocals, and ‘Sorry I was Under the Sky’ would have made Innerspeaker even better than it was. Seeing the trend yet? Yep, every flipping track is marvellous. On record, these tunes seem more alive than anything to come off the press in years. Off-mic coughs and whoops are all there, so much so that at times Beard, Wives, Denim feels more like a live record than a studio one, with every acid-drenched ounce leaping out to grab you.
This is music to lose your shit to in the desert. Sort of like Jesus, only you don’t have to deal with all the hassle afterwards. With a new record entitled Man, It Feels Like Space Again in the pipeline, it’s pretty obvious this trio are planning on going seriously far out.
By Joe Abbitt
Dance Yrself Clean