by The Growlers on FatCat RecordsReleased 14/10/2013
Following hot on the heels of The Growlers' acclaimed 'Hung at Heart' LP, their first for FatCat, 'Not Psych!' sees the famously prolific band deliver another set of their distinctive brand of warped, yet highly melodic, pop songs; zoning in on a vision and aesthetic that is truly unique.
Opener 'Dogheart II' encapsulates The Growlers world perfectly, incorporating jangly surf guitars, a ramshackle skiffle shuffle, elements of psychedelia, and garage rock production, while featuring a typically captivating vocal performance from Brooks Nielsen extolling the virtues of younger women, signing off each chorus with trademark humour; "Take it from a dirty young man". Elsewhere, 'Humdrum Blues' is one of the boldest and most direct pop songs The Growlers have yet written, and also one of the most heartfelt. A band which seemingly never leaves the road, the lyrics detail the effect of that lifestyle on relationships, specifically one in which a girlfriend wants a "ring on her hand" rather than a vague commitment that isn't "enough to keep her wondering what I do when I'm gone". Nielsen's cracked croon suits the road-weary nature of the song as he sings "I never wanted money/ never wanted to chase these dragons/ not afraid of being lonely/ but if she leaves I don't know what will happen", a confessional that places the listener as a sympathetic drinking partner, a mood enhanced by the dive bar organ that permeates the track.
A hard working band with a strong DIY ethic, The Growlers recorded and produced this set of songs themselves and their self-coined 'bent sound' is achieved with a high knowledge of modern day recording techniques, paired with the very finest outdated studio equipment. Having attempted recording with high profile producers before but always deciding to scrap the sessions before re-recording the tracks themselves, it is clear that only the band can document the sounds in their heads. While they fit comfortably on stages at festivals alongside contemporaries such as Black Lips, Ty Segall, Real Estate, and the Allah-La's, and recall the greats of the past such as The Seeds, The Chiffons, The Doors, and The Shirelles, The Growlers are gradually carving out their own place in rock'n roll history. As the title of the EP alludes to, The Growlers are a difficult band to pin down, but that's just what makes them so enchanting.
The eight track vinyl release was pressed on limited edition green vinyl.