This band has an unwieldy name but they make delicious indie-rock. Wildly catchy and smart in all the right ways, the 6 tunes on The French Press EP, out Friday via Sub Pop and Ivy League, are some of the songs that are gonna soundtrack your spring. They've already soundtracked my late winter so I know of what I speak.
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever, or Rolling Blackouts C.F., are from Australia and yet the tunes here bristle with the wit of earlier bands from New Zealand, or late Seventies power pop acts from America. While the title cut is a semi-familiar brand of alt-rock, the buzzing "Julie's Place" worms its way into your earholes with a blend of Rubinoos and Let's Active riffs, all smart guy, skinny tie stuff. It's aces, obviously, as is the next cut "Sick Bug" which somehow marries an early Chills motif with a dash of Saints-style snotty attitude -- the melding of Eighties Kiwi rock and early Oz punk done right. "Colours Run" snarls in a brief flash of slapdash melodic invention, while "Dig Up" is very nearly a run at what could pass as a Go-Betweens number. The EP ends on the excellent "Fountain Of Good Fortune" which bears a slight trace of the legacy of The Triffids. I wouldn't necessarily compare Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever to that other great Australia band but I would put them in the same league in many ways.
Weaving together a sound that's been influenced by some fine artists, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever manage to make compelling indie-pop that's catchy and clever. This new EP is superb and I can heartily recommend The French Press, but its relative brevity only makes me want to hear more from this band. And soon please.
[Photo: Rubin Utama]