One of our favorite festivals for discovering and showcasing the best new fuzzy, twee and lo-fi pop sounds around happens right in our backyard in Brooklyn/NYC.
The festival #NYCPOPFEST has been known for discovering the best pop throbs consistently for the past few years, including bands like The Drums, My Teenage Stride, and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. This year the organizers of Popfest put together an impressive showcase at Shea Stadium with four promising bands: Ski Lodge, Beach Day, Silk Flowers, and South of France.
The first band, South of France, kicked it off with a scuzzy lo-fi set. It started
as the bedroom project of Jeff Cormack that would later include Kelly Lueke in Los
Angeles. The duo has been making waves with their popular track “Kings”, which
strays from a lot of other beachy lo-fi noise pop. Look out for South of France as they
are preparing their debut LP due out in the Fall.
The biggest surprise came next with Weird Records new addition Plastic
Flowers. Sean Earl Beard, who recently relocated to New York from Tallahassee FL,
makes refreshingly crisp pop songs, sharp and dreamy lo-fi fragments, recalling
predecessors Felt and New Order.
Next up was Kanine Records recent addition Beach Day. Not much is known
about this band at the moment (other than they sound a lot like the Black Lips…) but
they delivered a confident set punctuated by the singer’s extraordinary voice and
noisy bursts of guitar solos.
Ski Lodge was the headlining band, the newest project of Andrew Marr, who
was previously in The Clementines. Their simple elegant pop sound is the perfect
soundtrack for a day under the sun or at the sea. Ski Lodge was right at home at this
year’s Pop Fest. Their debut release is a self-titled EP with Dovecote Records. The EP
contains four tracks, including the excellent, “I would die to be.”
Overall, we were pleasantly surprised by the unusual sounds we heard on a mild summer night in Bushwick, Brooklyn.