West Palm Beach, FL
Weezer, Shins, Built to Spill
Channeling the sounds and spirit of indie rock’s greatest touchstones, Surfer Blood have accomplished much in their short existence. 2010’s Astro Coast [Kanine Records] is the sound of an exuberant band just rounding into form, and provides some of the catchiest jams in years.
Surfer Blood was officially formed in 2009 by guitarist and vocalist John Paul Pitts and drummer Tyler Schwarz, two dudes who had been friends since high school. Rounded out by guitarist Thomas Fekete, bassist Brian Black, and percussionist Marcos Marchesani, the quintet has been touring nearly non-stop since its inception, and that familiarity is on display on the band’s recently released debut full-length.
The group combines tasty indie rock and clever lyrics in the style of Weezer and Pavement with plenty of reverb and cool melodies. Surfer Blood’s strength, though, lies in its consistently interesting guitar work, packing songs with enough hooks, riffs, and chunky chords to assuage even the most disillusioned of rock fans.
Put a tune like “Floating Vibes” or “Swim” onto a mix CD or playlist and you’re guaranteed to get a response from friends when the song hits the speakers. With Astro Coast, Surfer Blood have given us the first great backyard barbecue album of the year.
Photo by: Ian Witlen