SUMMER’S really, really goddam here, and in the most deliciously quirky way, as LA’s French-American psych-popsters Pearl & The Oysters drop the first single from their third album, which will be with us right at the end of the highest season.
That single, “Treasure Island” is a delight of angelic vocals, modular whoops and whooshes, gently psych grooves and an immensely fun ‘n’ funky guitar break, jazzy chords and sunlit bliss. Bottle this and get your vitamin D hit anywhere, anytime.
It’s a feast of tropicalia, exotica, Latin groove and recalls Pet Sounds, The High Llamas, Stereolab, Eden Ahbez, Harpers Bizarre, The Free Design, Melody’s Echo Chamber … pretty much all the good things. The yummy things. Why not listen for yourself? I’ll get some pineapple ready for when you return.
It’s culled from that forthcoming album, the pair’s third, Flowerland; that’ll be available on September 3rd on Chicago’s Feeltrip Records. A feelgoodtrip.
Juliette Pearl Davis (lead vocals, flute, synths) and Joachim Polack (keys/synths, backing vocals, bass, guitar, violin, percussion) have only just landed in the City of Angels; the album is intended as the final part of the band’s lightly conceptual ‘Florida trilogy,’ which began on their 2017 self-titled debut and continued on the following year’s Canned Music, both of which you can find over at Bandcamp. Cos you’re gonna wanna track back through the catalogue, trust me, to bring some much-needed fun to your heart.
On Flowerland the pair focus more on personal narratives: eco-anxiety, depression, and the stresses of finishing graduate school are all explored, somewhat cryptically, in the lyrics, but the music is a gorgeously retrotronic-soft-psych cocktail to drink deeply of.
It even comes complete with a cover of Caetano Veloso’s tropicalia anthem “Baby”, as also fashioned so brilliantly by Os Mutantes.
“We really love the idea of combining vintage electronic sounds with nature, à la [Yellow Magic Orchestra founder Haruomi] Hosono, and finding a bridge between those worlds,” says Juliette.
And of this lovely first dip in the waters of the new record? “‘Treasure Island’ is the name of a beloved beach town on the Gulf Coast of Florida,” they reveal.
“The TI beachfront is home to a number of pretty iconic 1950s’ roadside architectural landmarks, like the Thunderbird Resort’s oversize neon sign, which we reference in the opening line of the song.
“It’s not a hidden-getaway type of spot but to us that beach always radiated a kind of magical healing energy.
“This song, whose basic rhythm track was composed and recorded in a ten-minute span at Rockaway studio in December 2018, was our humble attempt at bottling Treasure Island’s atmosphere, in musical form.”