The Peacers, Mike Donovan’s post-Sic Alps harbingers of fuzz-wrangled hangover hits, have continued to evolve since their 2015 debut. What once started as a duo with Ty Segall in tow has bloomed to an ever-evolving band that now ropes in some of the Bay Area’s premier players, landing Bo Moore, Shayde Sartin and Mike Shoun for the latest round in the studio, kicking out their most malleable and measurable record yet. For the last bout as the Crimsonmen, the band shot through a roughed-up vision of Donovan’s wrangle, but they’re coming back through the mirror to find a balance between the grit and the gold on Blexxed Rec. Recorded between the poles of San Francisco and my own haunted hollow of Hudson, NY, the record finds Mike harnessing the woolen wonders of his WOT days, while still divining that particular punch that only Peacers seem to bring out in him. The lines always blur between the latter days of the Alps, his solo works and the midnight masquerade of The Peacers, but the specters seem to be aligning in a particularly potent configuration as the band gets Blexxed.
Shakedown crust-eyed country, last call folk chasers and washed-dollar blues all make their way into the skin of this record in perfect proportions. The backing band’s crystallized and synced their skid with Donovan’s over the years and it feels like they’re all hitting this one head-on. Donovan’s own brand of subterranean pop has long been a favorite around here, and it’s great to hear such a fully realized version of what he’s been mining over the years. The record swings between the clean, the crushed, and the corroded in such seamless fashion that others might fumble the finer points, but The Peacers manage to make tender asides slide seamlessly into the doubled-dubbed VHS ripple as if that’s how all our brains were meant to be humming. If you’re a long time fan — welcome home. If you’re just getting into Mike’s world of sound, you picked a hell of a time to jump on board.
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