Los Angeles shoegazers XO are gearing up for the release of their new EP, Courage this March. Twin brothers Jeff and Jake Turner are former members of the popular alternative/emo band Say Anything, and released their debut album as XO titled Heart in 2014. Together, the band has two full-length albums and a Part Time Punks live session recording. Their current lineup includes Jeff Turner (Vocals/Guitar), Jake Turner (Bass/Vocals) and Justin Vasquez (Drums).
XO’s upcoming EP was recorded during the Covid-19 lockdown, and their new single “By My Side” was recently released on streaming platforms. “The EP consists of four new songs tracked from November to December 2020. We recorded Courage at our practice space in Signal Hill and our home studios. Phil Odom mixed and mastered it in LA, this was our third time working together. Available March 26th on limited edition pink cassette (preorder on Bandcamp) with digital streaming on Spotify and YouTube, etc,” XO shared about their upcoming album.
The band released a dreamy technicolored music video to accompany the release of “By My Side,” the second song on the upcoming album. The song, in true XO fashion, is filled catchy riffs with plenty reverb and delay in the vocals, which float gently above their wash of sound. Take a look below and get inspired to hit the road and spend some time in nature with your loved one:
Having seen XO live a handful of times, their goal in performance is to blast the audience away with walls of sound à la My Bloody Valentine. The band had several shows lined up prior to the lockdown, and shared about how Covid-19 has affected them: “We did have to cancel a handful of shows in March last year when the quarantine was announced. It would have been our first time playing San Francisco, plus we had already booked a small tour to San Diego and San Pedro with some local shows. It’s been a sad year for most musicians without live shows happening, we can’t wait get back to it in time. Our practices have been incredible though, we’ve been able to add tons of songs to our future live setlist. Lately, we’ve been using the practice space to turn our focus to writing and recording. Advances in gear made it possible to wrangle a good recording setup affordably, and collaborate from a distance with our mixing engineer.”
Singer and guitarist Jeff Turner shared about the band’s creative process: “I write songs pretty regularly, and when a group of songs easily fit together we start working on them as full band demos. Some of the new songs are 4-5 years old, some only a few months. I send my demos to Jake and we work as a duo in the studio, hammering them out together on guitar and bass. Then I play live drums to accent and finalize the tempo for the song. We track rough live demos to practice for the final recording. It’s been a fun challenge to make all the small decisions we usually don’t worry about when working with other engineers/producers, we hope the trial and error pays off on Courage.”
Courage will be released on all streaming platforms and Bandcamp is March 26th and is currently available for pre-order.