Being a Philly native, I can tell you from experience the Jersey Shore you see on MTV is not the real deal. Sure, it gets pretty gross on the boardwalk sometimes; I've seen my fair share of unfortunate booty shorts and deep-fried Oreos (it's the combination that really hurts)-but not everyone that goes to the beach is disturbingly underdressed and punching people, or getting punched, in the face. Don't get me wrong, I love the Jersey Shore, both the show and the real thing, but when it comes to my fantasy beach experience, it's something a little more...classic? Laid back? Attractive?
Spending the summer on the West Coast, I've been able to find some pretty good matches, and with beach-friendly bands like Best Coast, Real Estate, and now Portland's Orca Team, I feel like I'm also getting closer to the perfect seashore soundtrack.
With its simple snare beats and low slung guitar rifts, Orca Team's Let It Go album sounds like a cheerfully lazy day at the beach, 1960s style. The band's singer, Leif Anders, croons to us through a faded and far away microphone, as if the wind blowing off the coast were a piece of the band's instrumental ensemble. Anders, along with drummer Amy Taylor and guitarist Jessica B., describe their music as a kind of "post punk beach party," and it totally works. I'm picturing a slow motion surfer with shaggy hair and cool tattoos as I listen to this album, and it's really great.
"No Fun" is perfect for more upbeat plays, with its fast-paced snares and high-pitched yips and yelps, while "And She Knows" is just a great all-around song to groove to. To be honest, there isn't a bad song on the whole album, including the local shout-out track "Vancouver, B.C.," even if its lyric "We could stop up in Seattle but it ain't that great/ so let's just drive right out of Washington State" isn't terribly flattering.
Whatever, man. It's still good music! The weather is officially wonderful, so pack the boombox, drive to the coast, and give a little nod to surf revival with the Orca Team's Let It Go. Righteous.
SPECIAL NOTE: Maybe they hated on Seattle a little bit, but Orca Team will still be playing in the Emerald City July 25 at the Kaladi Bros Coffee place as part of the Northwest Micro Tour.
Operation Family Support