There has been a huge 90’s revival with bands like Yuck, Bleached, and Pavement. Total Slacker is a nice addition to the movement. Total Slacker is very reminiscent of a lot of lo-fi punky type bands from an era not long ago . In fact, the band’s whole aesthetic and theme relates to the 90’s era. They named their band after Richard Linklater’s 1991 film about aimless Austin-ites Slacker. Their lyrics cite “Full House” and New Kids on the Block, and they even have an entire song about a VHS collection.
Total Slacker is a Brooklyn based rock band, with garage and psychedelic leanings. Their live shows are known to be lively Drummer Ross Condon and bassist Emily Oppenheimer grew up in Sante Fe, New Mexico where they attended high school together. Vocalist and frontman Tucker Rountree hails from Salt Lake City. It wasn’t until after moving to Brooklyn that they truly came together as a band.
Want more info read a g-chat interview with Total Slacker over at Impose Magazine.
When describing Widowspeak’s sound, critics (and the band themselves) have thrown around phrases such as “90’s grunge” “60’s psychedelic” “hazy atmospheric dream pop” and “shoegaze.” While these descriptions may not appear to be cohesive at first, the band’s eponymous debut LP, released in August 2011, employs all of these styles. Their songs are melodic and often upbeat, yet Widowspeak still manages to add the “David Lynch-esque darkness” that they describe themselves as having. Molly Hamilton’s vocals convey darkness through their sultry smokiness, a feeling Rob Thomas continues with his crisp guitar. And it doesn’t hurt that both Hamilton and Michael Stasiak (drums) are both from Washington state. In fact, they describe their music as being “songs about homesickness, about longing for pine forests, reckless youth and dark nights in strange cities.” Throughout the LP, it is easy to see just how influenced they are by their home state.
Though Molly Hamilton and Michael Stasiak originally met as teenagers, Widowspeak was only official formed in May 2010 in Brooklyn, when Stasiak and Hamilton asked Rob Thomas to join. By the following Fall, the group had recorded six songs on a cassette using only garage band and a built-in laptop microphone, calling it the “October Tape”. From there it wound up at Brooklyn’s Captured Tracks, and, merely a few weeks later (and after their sixth show) the group recorded their first 7” single, entitled “Harsh Realm”. They followed up “Harsh Realm” in August 2011 with “Widowspeak”, their first LP, and since have played shows with headliners such as Twin Sister, Dum Dum Girls and Kurt Vile.