Monday, February 22, 2010

Washed Out-New Theory

Our friend and fellow blogger Lydia Cruz has some serious musical knowledge and wanted to share a song by one of her favorite artists, Washed Out. Thanks a lot Lydia, we hope to hear more from you soon.

When Ernest Green moved back home with his parents in June of last year, no one could have predicted that only a few months stood between obscurity and buzzworthy musicianship. Adults living at home face plenty of stigmatism, and America doesn’t generally crown pop stars bunking down in their childhood bedrooms. But even artists can crave the comforts of home, and the move would ultimately prove itself a renaissance.

Despite Green’s previous experimentation with ambient, dance, and even hip-hop music, it was the return to his rural Georgian roots that sparked his production of lo-fi synthpop, reflecting both the extent of his talent and environmental influence. Ernest quickly settled on the new, nonsensical moniker “Washed Out”, and with the help of a small Charleston-based record label called Mirror Universe, he released a limited amount of material on (wait for it) cassette.

Just like Bon Iver/Justin Vernon was inspired by an isolated Wisconsin cabin (For Emma, Forever Ago, 2008), and Jason Lytle was enkindled by his relocation to Montana (Yours Truly, the Commuter, 2009), Washed Out quickly became the artistic reflection of a laidback, peach-filled, Georgian summer. With a sonically distinct nod to the eighties - a tasty acid groove that hits like a soothing dose of Nyquil and recalls a refreshing, rolled-down window breeze – Washed Out breathes new life into the best part of the John Hughes era.

I have to single out “New Theory” from Washed Out’s Life of Leisure EP as a truly influential jam. The lyrics are simple, yet powerful. The rhythmic/synth production grabs a hold quickly but clandestinely, lulling the listener into a vivid, dreamlike state of auditory adventure. And like any great dream, you, the participant fear the inevitable ending, the all too-rapid return to consciousness.

Lydia Cruz

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