This Astro EP by La Casa Al Mare (Self-Released)
A few months back I’d realized I had lost touch with the members of Sea Dweller, a band that put out two promising songs and followed it up with Signs of a Perfect Disaster, a singular and inventive take on Shoegaze that I still listen to regularly. Former drummer Paolo Miceli told me he was in a new band and just last week I got an email from La Casa Al Mare guitarist and vocalist Alessio Pindinelli with a link to their upcoming This Astro EP. The EP is a collection of a few singles and unreleased songs, and if you buy the physical CD you get the title track.
La Casa Al Mare (The House by the Sea) love bent guitar strings and distortion, yet don’t shy away from melody and mood. I Don’t Want To melds crunching and keening guitars with heavy cymbal percussion, lightly sang vocals floating in the mix. About halfway through, the smoldering fuzz clears up if only to again drive home the returning guitar buzz even harder. Sunflowers is all brightness and positivity, the highly sang vocals not quite as buried, the guitar melodies catchy and uplifting, inviting the listener to hum along. M stands for Majestic, the vocals almost audible, like hearing a conversation from the other room, a few words come through. Again, it’s all about the feel: guitars wooze and roll, rise and wobble as cymbals puncture the thick melodies like clattering blades. At All recalls Ecstasy-era MBV with clangy and catchy guitars, a touch cleaner and the “ooh ooh ooh”‘s fun to hum along with. Tonight Or Never is sad and lovely, the vocals forlorn, as if caught in the memories of a lost love, shakers and acoustic guitars are backed by misty-eyed guitar tones.
The This Astro EP comes to an all-too-soon end with CD Girl, Marco Poloni’s bass and Miceli’s drums mixed up front, with strummed guitar, string textures echoing and chiming through the air, another sad and wistful vocal performance becomes cathartic and soaring as the playing intensifies. La Casa Al Mare bring the song and the EP to a rousing close with cymbal crashes and repeated motifs that drift off in the sunset of your mind.
(by Bret Miller)