A few weeks ago - July 2, 2014, to be exact - Connecticut's The Guru released their debut full-length album, Pretty Things, on Seagreen Records. With a merging of styles that is just as much artistic as it is mathematical, The Guru have composed fourteen songs which lie at the bizarre intersection where technical indie rock, weirdo '80s new wave, latter-day psychedelic pop, and alt-jazz meet and become one musical vehicle to carry forth a rather unique and progressive sound. Imagine, if you will, vocals somewhat comparable to Isaac Brock's, sparkling and infectious guitar chord and note couplings that bring to mind cleaner and tighter Braid and Algernon Cadwallader riffs, bass parts that go well beyond root notes and sitting in the background as a second class instrument, and precision drumming which goes from punctuating key moments to driving the song. Think hints of Cap'n Jazz, Minutemen, Modest Mouse, and Maps and Atlases...but more, and different in a way that is difficult to describe.Whatever the case, The Guru really have something here.
The Guru's Pretty Things opens with the album's title track sets the tone with its psychedelic indie rock. From there one encounters a handful of choice offerings, such as "Co-Desire," "How I Love That Girl," "Golden Brown," "Buoy-U," and "Rejected Nunkie." To get an idea of what to expect from this quartet, check out the video for "Pretty Things" attached to this review.
Pretty Things was recorded in Somerville, Massachusetts, by Matt Beaudoin, save 10, 11, 13 and 14, which were recorded at Virtue and Vice Studios in Brooklyn by Ben Talmi and Jamie Walters. The players are as follows: Eddie Golden III (vocals, drums, keyboards), Colin Sullivan (lead guitar, backup vocals), Kyle McEvoy (rhythm guitar, backup vocals), Adam Straus (bass, cello, backup vocals).
If you like what you hear, support The Guru by buying a copy of Pretty Things.