West coast rock outfit together PANGEA hate being labeled, in the musical sense that is, so I will not label them as a garage punk band, Instead, I’ll simply say that they are a rock band that displays elements of those respective genres. The groups most recent release The Phage EP came out late last year, and released through Burger Records. The switch from the record label Harvest, a subsidiary of Capitol, seemed like a right move for the group. The corporate structure of Harvest, as well as the musical contrasts of their labelmates, lead them to return to Burger Records, who’s laidback and unobtrusive atmosphere appealed more to the band.
The only album that got released through Harvest, was the bands third full length studio album, Badillac, which was unquestionably a turning point for the group. Shedding much of the influence that caused many to label them a “garage punk” band, Badillac veered into a direction that channeled lead vocalist William Keegans, influence of 90’s alt rock while still retaining the overall sound that they’re known for. That influence was plainly heard on Badillac through the loud, weightier guitar, and heavy bass that gave the album a much grungier feel. Despite the heavier sound, instrumentation on the record was, for the most part, much cleaner than previous albums.
Badillac and The Phage EP, insinuate together PANGEA’s reluctance to conform to the restraints of the blatant garage and punk vibe that was so prevalent on previous albums such as Living Dummy. Looking forward, I doubt you’ll be hearing any more screeching, choppy guitar accompanied by overly distorted vocals. In hindsight, together PANGEA’s desire to distance themselves from this sound is completely understandable. Instead of emulating the endless number of groups who’ve adopted the typical lo-fi garage punk aesthetic, together PANGEA instead look to differentiate themselves from the fold.
together PANGEA’s sonic change has me anticipating their next project, and I hope they can continue to breath some new life into a stagnating, overcrowded genre.
November 25th at The Sidewinder
Doors at 9:00pm