Wand – “Plum”

Wand’s last album, 1000 Days opened up their fuzz-psych to broader territory, digging themselves out of the shadow of the roster of bands they’d been opening for (Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, Moon Duo) and letting them carve out their own path through psychedelia. That album trended towards a ’70s psych-folk that was continued, refined and shot through with a dose of melancholy on Cory Hanson’s solo album last year. Now the band adds two new members, Robbie Cody (guitar) and Sofia Arreguin (keyboards, vocals), giving their sound a wider screen than ever and tacking into a new wind on their latest album. The title track from the upcoming Plum culls from a later brand of psych-pop, streaking their psych stylings with nods to ’90s heroes, while keeping their experimental core solid.

The song crushes cacophony under the boot of melody in a way that hasn’t worked so well since The Beta Band were running wild. Hanson and his expanded outfit tumble over one another to each get their instrumental line to the top of the heap and the result is dizzying and shambolic with his vocals adding a nice touch of bittersweet bite to the track. With so many bands going back to the well that feeds them time and again, its nice to see Wand continue to grow and explore new directions on each new album. Can’t wait for the rest of Plum to seal the deal.



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