The Asteroid No. 4 has a knack for burying beatific pop melodies beneath the rattle and (reverb-soaked) swirl of revisionist psychedelic noise, crafting some good tunes and drowning them within even better noise.
“Hey Love” begins with a burst of metallic feedback, instantaneously diffusing into a slender line of choppy acoustic guitar. While Scott Vitt’s lyrics point out minuscule details of faraway places (“South of London where the roses seem to grow through the cobblestone…”), his band whirls around him and stirs up a hazy tantrum of distortion and smoky percussion. The dizzy acid pop of “Let It Go” and the trippy Stones-meets-Jesus and Mary Chain swagger of “Hold On” are stylish, astral rock tunes. Vitt’s vocal delivery is distanced and omniscient, ebbing and evolving from moment to moment, sounding like a stoned church choir in one verse, a lone and fragile voice crackling across open space in another. Only a few weak spots pop up here and there: the gutbust spoken word epilogue on “Hei Nah Lab” fizzles and “War” sounds like a 90’s Britpop band stuck under five feet of muddy water
But the many standout tracks far out way the minor missteps. On “She Touched the Sky,” bent guitars rise from the din of splashy cymbals and tambourine like lazy heat off a tar desert road. The track teeters and wobbles and threatens to spill out over the edge, but the magic trick of the Asteroid No. 4 is the way the band contains its chaos.
Favorite Track: “She Touched the Sky”
Reviewer Bio - Christopher j Ewing is a writer and filmmaker living in Los Angeles with a girl and a designer dog. He is in a band by himself, has a myspace account at www.myspace.com/wastedpotentialproduction and a production company at (www.wastedpotentialproductions.com) for freelance film, video and journalism work.