Texas is Funny Records
At first listen, Glish might appear to be standard shoegaze, though, for this critic, weaned on My Bloody Valentine and their ilk in the mid-90s, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. There’s the name, for one, “Glish,” essentially meaningless, except in a kind of onamonapiac way. Opener “Pretty Car,” from their self-titled debut, leads with a heavy chorus of Byron Chance’s howling guitar, instantly recalling all those 90s alternative British bands with similarly evocative, one-word names (Lush & Ride, for instance). But it quickly pulls back into subdued verses with some lovely male/female harmonies and dueling delayed guitars.
Second song “Boketto” picks up the pace, a real rocker that shows off the deft bass/drum interplay and rapid-fire stop/starts of a taut, more seasoned band. “Post Punkass” lives up to its moniker with a more off-kilter groove that manages at times to sound like three songs in one, yet still somehow congeals together into a compelling whole. The three parts align in a blistering middle that lets drummer Evan Cvitamovic really cut loose.
True to its shoegaze roots, the music comes first, but the vocals do occasionally cut through, especially in more downbeat numbers like “Human Skull,” with lead vocalist Meagan Lanier’s evocative singing style conveying emotion without over-emoting. My only complaint on the more bare sections is that they seem to be an excuse for bassist Dexter Gilmore to pop his bass with every snare hit, a style more suited to R&B than rock.
For all their rocking-ness, though, I do feel like the band is still finding it’s identity. Not quite as sonically experimental as My Bloody Valentine, and lacking the pop hooks of the more memorable Smashing Pumpkins material, the band fits somewhere in the middle, and I wish they’d tip it into one direction or the other. Overall, though, it’s a solid work from a promising act that I can only assume rocks even harder live.