The Upshot: New Jersey shoegaze and psych pop holds up.
BY MICHAEL TOLAND
Jersey City’s Overlake plays shimmering psych pop like Mom used to make, especially if your mom was related to bands like Slowdive or the Drop Nineteens. Emphasizing melody over crunch, the trio worries less about overwhelming folks and more about tickling their tune bone. The songs turn around six-string strumming and chord changes that move from winsome to aggressive, with a propulsive rhythm section that never lets things get too wispy. Guitarist Tom Barrett has a typically mellifluous voice, but with a croon that sounds like Eric Matthews after taking acid, what other kind of music is he going to sing? Bassist Lysa Opfer chimes in from time to time as well, frosting a vocal blend heavy on the creamy side. “And Again,” “Can Never Tell” and “Winter is Why” roll from jangle to crunch without muss or fuss, never overloading on either approach – it’s as if the band realized the melodies would work either way, and decided to do it half-and-half. Overlake doesn’t do anything new with its dreamy alt.rock, but what it does do, it does quite well.
DOWNLOAD: “Can Never Tell,” “And Again,” “Winter is Why”