At the vanguard of what is being cited as the third wave of psychedelic sound, ‘Cellar Doors’, is the shimmering first effort from this rapidly emerging San Francisco trio.
While many bands have tried (and all too often failed) to rekindle and reclaim the sunshine-dappled glow of the immortal psychedelic records synonymous with their West Coast forefathers, the CELLAR DOORS sound is enriched in a lucid esotericism of their own expertly anorak mastering. Stepping beyond the well worn path of 60s nostalgia most look to their native California for inspiration, ‘Cellar Doors’ instead fix their gaze to the gloomy rain-beaten streets and towering concrete block studded cities that have birthed some of Europe’s and East Coast America’s most escapist sounds both sides of the Atlantic; a far cry from flower power, but scratch beneath the surface as CELLAR DOORS do and you will find a technicolour palette such as that which adorns the hypnotic sound of their forthcoming debut album.
Utilising the talents of frontman and chief-lyricist Sean Fitzsimmons’ haunting, cavernous vocals and versatile guitar conjurings; the ebb and flow of Jason Witz’ rolling bass lines and dreamy synthesised dreamscapes; and the precise and mechanical skitter of Miki Rogulj; CELLAR DOORS interweave their constituent parts and influences into a definitive sound that is immediately classic and equally cutting-edge.
Splaying across the pools of post-punk, new wave, shoe-gaze, dream-pop and beyond, ‘Cellar Doors’ glistens with the wisdom learned of past masters, but with its eyes firmly on horizons new and exciting. The likes of album opener ‘City Girl’ and ‘Silhouette’ harness the motorik chug and splutter of krautrock staples NEU!; ‘Sirens’ and ‘Pale Blue’ glisten with those sky scraping sensory-rushes so mastered by shoe-gaze pioneers Ride or MBV; ‘In A Dream’ and ‘Prism’s loving nods to industrial majesty of Joy Division’s flagship post-punk efforts; the sinuous synth-lines of ‘Frost’ or ‘Hollow’ adopt those disconnected snaking rhythms definitive of Suicide’s frayed masterpieces; ‘Heroine’ basks in a stoner louche-ness that see the unhinged thrills of Jesus Of Mary Chain or Velvet Underground continue to delight to this day; and all before ‘Wild Heart’ casts the album adrift on a sea of the stately atmospherics reminiscent of those found on ‘Ocean Rain’ or ’69 Love Songs’.
Recorded at Coyote Hearing Studios in Oakland, California, with production and engineering by Jeremy Black, ‘Cellar Doors’ is available now via the Spiritual Pajamas label.
Leading exponents of what is being called the third wave of psychedelic sound; the have been coaxed out of their thriving underground scene for support slots via invitation from the likes of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Roky Erickson, Allah-Las, The Warlocks, Night Beats, and Toy, and have performed various festivals such as Levitation (Austin, TX), Shiiine On Weekender (UK) and Liverpool Festival Of Psychedelia to name a few.
Dripping with pure power psych melody and undulating post-punk walls of sound, ‘Cellar Doors’ is a powerful, brooding and essential new release. Stamped with that rare quality of sounding at once timeless and cutting edge, the debut long-player from this vital Californian trio is sure to place them on the musical landscape early in 2019.
CELLAR DOORS RELEASE THEIR S/T DEBUT ALBUM VIA SPIRITUAL PAJAMAS – AVAILABLE NOW