If Your Diary Came With Drinks
What’s winter without a little merriness from Madrid? Spanish sisterhood and lovers of lo-fi Hinds are sending some warmth your way this January with debut album Leave Me Alone (Mom + Pop/Lucky Number). In 2011, friends Ana García Perrote and Carlotta Cosials sat bored on a beach armed with two guitars, the knowledge of three chords and a Bob Dylan song. Tenacious tooling around led to an earnest ambition to form a band and the duo (initially christened Deers before changing the moniker for legal reasons) began with modest performances and two woozy demos before rounding the project out with bassist Ade Martín and drummer Amber Grimbergen – and thus Hinds was born.
With a hard-to-pin-down sound that’s both darling and disheveled, Hinds has been called everything from lo-fi garage rock to 60s pop, an effort infused with jangly guitar, cute, cacophonous vocals, fuzzy distortion and untidy arrangements. Leave Me Alone claims influences ranging from The Strokes to Shannon and the Clams, made all the more endearing by clumsy Spanish accents and an energetic heart-on-sleeve attitude. The album is a fizzy collection of tracks that serves as part diary and part stream of consciousness, taking an inherent messiness and utilizing it like a weapon. There’s a command there that is cleanly unhinged, like suddenly taking a back road based on a route remembered from a dream.
Hinds’ debut runs the garage gamut, channeling some of the best elements of indie rock both current and past. Ukulele soaked track “I’ll Be Your Man” is reminiscent of Rilo Kiley’s, “Ripchord” in both structure and vocals with a tinny, minimal sound that’s all earnestly and sparseness. “Solar Gap” is a sprawling, two minute(ish) interlude that recalls Of Montreal’s Cherry Peel, while “Warts” is sunny girl-group pop in all its glory. The garage rock element is dialed down and less aggressive than the slew of acts currently falling into the genre, while occasionally skewing so directly into late 90s – early 2000s pop that at times wouldn’t seem out of place within the Elephant 6 Collective.
While Leave Me Alone doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it does maintain an element of surrealism, story time and kitsch – this is a hammock record, a barbecue record, a Saturday afternoon or midday freeway drive record – it’ll have you ready to party, or at the very least get you to dive into a beer and the mood to mess around.